Anyone that owns a chicken coop should know that just like your home, this structure needs to be constantly cleaned. This is true especially if you intend to bring in new birds or replace the old flock. Professionals believe that maintaining and disinfecting a chicken coop is supposed to be one of the primary responsibilities one needs to know when keeping an urban chicken coop.
Cleaning your coop requires specific steps though. As a farmer, you should only use cleaning supplies which won't harm your birds or in any way make them uncomfortable. Let's go over how to clean your chicken coop but before that, we are going to look at the materials and tools you need to get your clean up going.
Required Tools and Materials
When you have a chicken coop, you need to keep things clean. It is important that you know the required tools which would aid you in cleaning the chicken coop. Below are some of the tools you need:
Litter Scoop – a metal kitty litter scoop is a prominent tool one can use to scoop out your chicken coop daily. With this tool, you can scoop up droppings maybe when you go into the coop to collect eggs or to give them treats.
Rake and shovel – when cleaning out a chicken coop, you need a shovel or a handheld rake. The shovel can be used to move dirt around while the rake can be used to collect debris created by the birds.
A cleaning brush – a brush is used to clean dirt and the web off your coop.
A small plastic bag – Users can use a small plastic bag to collect debris when you rake out the straws which can be found in a chicken coop or it can act as a compost bin.
Short-handled scrub brush – This tool can be used to clean components of a chicken coop such as waterers. It can be used in conjunction with hot water and probably dish soap. Make sure you avoid bleach at all costs because plastic components tend to absorb bleach scent or odor.
Long-handled scrub brush – This can be used where the short-handled scrub brush can't reach. With this tool, you can reach the top of the chicken coop without any stress.
Vinegar – This material is perfect with hot water and a little bit of dish soap. Use vinegar only when you are undergoing thorough cleaning twice a year. This would give your chicken coup a nice smell while disinfecting the area. You can also fabricate a mixture that you might use to thoroughly clean your coop.
Gloves and Mask – Exactly! Your health is very important so consider wearing gloves to prevent bacteria from getting around your hands. Also, a mask would go a long way especially if the coop doesn't smell pleasant. Rubber gloves can be used for scrubbing while garden gloves can be used to clean up.
How to Clean Your Chicken Coop
Step 1: Scrape, Rake, and shovel everything off
Scrap off, rake, and shovel all the webs, chipping's, first, debris, feathers, cobwebs, etc. This step is the first and the most important lead to cleaning out your chicken coop since the vinegar would not evaporate the particles that support the bacteria growth. If you have a square shovel, that would go a long way in scraping off the dirt. Chicken manure can harden as strong as cement.
Step 2: Use a water Hose
Spray your floors, nestling boxes, walls, and roosts to remove fine dust or any soft stuck-on manure or dirt.
Step 3: Use the shovel again to scrape
Do a final sweeping/scraping on the soft dirt or manure then drain out the water from the coop, you can also result in sweeping it out of the door.
Step 4: Apply Elbow Grease
Mix up equal parts of warm water and vinegar in a bucket/container or just splash around straight vinegar on your wet floor. Most people would advise the splashing method. Use your brush or broom to vigorously scrape the ground making sure that you properly distribute the vinegar to every area of the floor.
Step 5: Rinse Again
Carry out another clean water rinse and sweep the remnant out through the door.
Step 6: Air Dry your Chicken Coop
Open up every window and door so that air would dry your chicken coop. Ray's from the sun can also act as a disinfectant and the fresh air that it gets is a good thing. Ventilation is essential for a chicken coop to stay clean and odorless at all times.
Step 7: Always Remember the Extras
With your hose, make sure you wash out the waterers and the feeders then air dry them in the sun too.
Step 8: Add New Beddings
With this step, you are welcoming your chickens home. It is really nice to add some fresh herbs to the nesting boxes while mixing a spray recipe to make your chicken coop smell as sweet as possible.