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Spring Cleaning and Lots of Chicken Snacks

Had a Saturday in March with nice weather and no other major plans...a perfect day to be outside and do some farm chores.

We started by un-winterizing the goat house. We had winterized the goats by putting down a big pallet, covering it with plywood, and moving the calf hutch on top of the pallet (to keep them off the ground). Inside the calf hutch was their doghouse, which a nice thick layer of hay packed around it for insulation, and a nice layer of shavings on the floor to help keep things clean.

We took that all apart and cleaned it out, and also raked up spent hay from around their run....something we couldn't do when it's frozen.

Between the hay around the run and the hay and shavings in the winterized "house", plus cleaning out inside and under the rabbit hutches, we ended up with a nice dose of carbon for the compost pile. In the picture above, you can see the chickens spreading and scratching through it.

That carbon layer made a nice base to add more food waste, a sizable load of which we picked up on Friday. The photo below shows the food waste added to the pile. As you can clearly see, the flock is really enjoying the "buffet".

In addition, we spent some time turning part of the old pile. The pile is breaking down nicely, but there are pockets in there that are lagging behind. Interestingly enough, these pockets also seem to be where the worms and other creepy crawlies congregate.

So, turning the pile uncovers the pockets of unbroken down material, which the chickens attack for a nice protein boost, which they happily tear the pockets to bit to get. So, the compost gets a little extra working-over, the chickens get a bit of protein to help offset the veggies and grains they get in the food waste, and I get some exercise!

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