All across the land people are building chicken coops and raising chickens in their backyards. Whether it is as a hobby, for fresh eggs or its being set up as a business to sell those eggs and poultry meat. One thing everyone agrees on, we all need to know how to clean a chicken coop.
Your chickens will stay healthier longer living in well maintained environment. A clean hen house not only makes your chickens happy, but you will feel better for having cleaned it.
Like all kept animals—your flock will be counting on you to remove the dirt and grime they can’t escape from. It is your duty to you to keep their area clean of anything that could make them sick or harm them.
When you clean your coop is basically up to you, but everyone starting out needs some guidance.
1) Solid waste tends to accumulate quickly and can be harmful to the chickens if they are in too close proximity. Solid chicken waste makes excellent fertilizer and it is worth your while to put in the extra effort to gather up as much as you can for use on your lawn, in the gardens and in the compost.
2) Liquid waste is another story, urine contains ammonia (which is an alkaline) and if the ammonia accumulates inside the coop it could cause respiratory problems for your birds.
Getting rid of any ammonia is paramount. The opposite of an alkaline is an acid. Household white vinegar is a mild acid which does an excellent job neutralizing ammonia and is very safe to use.
3) Understanding the need to control the chicken’s waste goes arm in arm with being on the lookout for dampness in the coop. Any water entering or accumulating in the coop can be a problem. That environment inside the coop needs to be warm, dry, and well ventilated but not drafty.
It is safe to say ‘a dry coop is clean coop’. Damp nesting (bedding) materials should be removed and replaced as soon as they are discovered.
How often should you give the coop a thorough cleaning? Even the pros argue that point. But a complete cleaning twice a year cleaning with a disinfectant wouldn’t be considered over-kill. Weekly monitoring with quick clean-ups when needed should be more than sufficient.
Just always be mindful of when you should clean the coop.
To make cleaning the coop easier, it’s a good idea to incorporate ‘ease of access’ into the original design.
Plan a way to quickly clean out any offending material. Scrub down the surfaces of: floors, walls, perches, nesting boxes, etc. with a disinfectant. Make sure you rinse thoroughly and have everything dried completely before you replace the nesting materials.
There you have some basic general guidelines that help you look after your chickens really well!!
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