Today I cleaned out the chook pen and took some pics.. Here is the empty pen –
Zeolite is a nitrogen absorber. Once it has absorbed all the nitrogen in the chicken coop I can use it on the garden as a fertiliser.
Here is the Zeolite in the bags we buy it in – it is $10 per bag. It lasts somewhere between 2-4 months just depending on how often one is able to scoop out the poop. If I don’t touch it at all, it’ll need changing in about 2 months – if I scoop regularly it’ll be 4 months.
Here is the outgoing zeolite and rice hulls. It is probably about 3/4 of the amount initially put in – the chooks scratch quite a lot of the material out across the months but thankfully a large portion of that material ends up on the pavers we have out near the door so that can be scooped up with a shovel and put into the garden. And of course there is quite an addition of chook poo to the material!
This material goes onto the garden as mulch and fertiliser and the garden loves it. There are some seeds in there so it does need a little more weeding than your average garden but it is so worth it with the results one gets.
And here is the pen when the new material has been added. The chooks come out and cluck and scratch up a storm, they love the new stuff.
I try to keep the zeolite in the middle of the pen and put the rice hulls (the cheaper material) out towards the edges in the hope more zeolite will stay in the pen.
So there you have it – a clean chicken pen, happy chooks scratching about, a happy garden thanks to the awesome fertiliser, and a happy me because I feel better when it is all clean and purty.