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The Smell...THE SMELL!!

post #1 of 54
Thread Starter 

I think I probably just have a sensitive nose.  I only have 8 hens that are kept in a 12 x 12 coop with an outside run the same size.  We just built the coop/run when we got the hens as baby chicks back in March so it is not an old environment.  It has a sand floor that I use a kitty litter scoop on twice a day.  Plus it has a fan in the coop that I am still running since I am in Texas and we havnt had cold temps yet.  Plus the humidity is up slightly.  I just love my chickens,.....But that smell gets in my head and stays even after I have left the coop.

Any secrets to improving the smell in the coop?

post #2 of 54

I use pine shavings in my coop and sand in the run and smell hasn't been an issue as long as the pine is dry but I have read here that sweet pdz can be used to freshen the coop, maybe someone will weigh in with an opinion...

Here's the website for pdz

http://www.sweetpdz.com/

Mom to 3 Spoiled Golden Retrievers, 2 SSs, 2 Australorps, 2 PBRs, 2 EEs, 2 Dk Brahmas,1 RIRs, 2 Wheaten Ameraucanas, 1 Black Orpington, 1 Ameraucana Roosters and 4 Rouen Ducks (Daffy and the Daisy Ducks)!  Visit my page at:  http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/golddogsmoms-member-page

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Mom to 3 Spoiled Golden Retrievers, 2 SSs, 2 Australorps, 2 PBRs, 2 EEs, 2 Dk Brahmas,1 RIRs, 2 Wheaten Ameraucanas, 1 Black Orpington, 1 Ameraucana Roosters and 4 Rouen Ducks (Daffy and the Daisy Ducks)!  Visit my page at:  http://www.backyardchickens.com/a/golddogsmoms-member-page

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post #3 of 54

I use pine shavings also and not only do the shavings smell good, they keep things dry.  Moisture is the reason it would be smelly because dry chicken poop doesn't really smell.  Of course, eventually the shavings get old and dirty and I have to shovel them out and put down a fresh bale, but with 15 chickens in the coop, it still stays clean a long time.  I bet I only have to change them out completely twice a year, Spring and Fall and the timing is perfect for seasonal composting.  My coop is 8' x 12'.  My run is over an old driveway so it's gravel and it stays dry also, no mud.

Lisa

I will admit that I have had an ammonia issue during a spring thaw when all the frozen poop thawed out at once and it did stink then!  I opened the vent windows and turned the shavings over with a pitch fork and it cleared up.  But this was after a long winter of chickens sitting up on the roost pooping all winter!


Edited by rungirl - 10/11/11 at 7:45am
post #4 of 54

Same here, use pine shavings and sprinkle with DE, nice dry poop and no smell.  We have had the chicks since July and have not cleaned the entire coop out yet.  DLM is the way to go for us!

Alabama momma of: A bunch of chicks:)

 

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Alabama momma of: A bunch of chicks:)

 

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post #5 of 54

Wet feed stinks, bad. If you keep food and water in the coop its going to smell and attract rodents.  Dlm in the coop, food and water outside. No smell for me.

1 husband, 1 son, 1 daughter, 1 cat, 3 dogs, 6 ducks, 7 turkeys, too many chickens of all ages and stages, and bunches of fish... Do you wonder why I'm nutts?

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1 husband, 1 son, 1 daughter, 1 cat, 3 dogs, 6 ducks, 7 turkeys, too many chickens of all ages and stages, and bunches of fish... Do you wonder why I'm nutts?

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post #6 of 54

Describe the smell.  Is it ammonia?  Is it the run or coup that smells or maybe both?  If the coup, then is the bedding damp?  The common key to most smelly situations is dampness.  Figure out how to keep it dry and you should not have much smell.  I use the deep litter method (DLM).  I turn the pine shavings in my coup once every week or two.  I dust it with DE to help dry out any wet poop.  I would not say my coup is oderless, that is not really reasonable to expect.  However, my coup is not unpleasant at all.  I clean my coup just twice a year, halloween and memorial day is when I shoot for to do the cleaning.  I am coming up on a cleaning soon and still it is not all that odiferious.

post #7 of 54

Twice a year cleaning here too, pine shavings/DE/Sweet PDZ. No smell. I have my husband check the smell for me, as he's not here during the week so his nose is 'fresh'. I don't think I could have chickens if I had to clean the coop daily! smile

I have tons of ventilation also, which helps. if the chickens don't turn the shavings, I do.


Edited by featherz - 10/11/11 at 8:18am
post #8 of 54

Try using one of those cheap vanilla pine trees for deodorizing cars.  It will mask the smell and keep the flies down.  There is also a product called Stall Dry, which is made of pelletized DE.  It works well to keep odors away and absorbs moisture. 

Good luck.

post #9 of 54

When it's as damp as it's been this year, you may just have to live with it.  We had three weeks running of rain here recently, and by the end of it, the smell was pretty impressive -- that kind of weather, you just can't dry things out, no matter how good your drainage is.  The run gets sloppy, and the bedding just sucks moisture out of the air.   But now we've had a good week of dry and the smell's gone.  Well, almost gone.  I *am* due to change the bedding, so it's a little stinky.  I use the pine pellets for bedding, and so long as they're dry, or at least have to opportunity to quickly dry out when wetted, they do just fine.  I do a spring thaw cleaning, a June cleaning, and an October cleaning -- just dump all the bedding out and replace.

post #10 of 54

When I clean the coops, I spray everything down with the Adams flea and tick spray. I find it has a pleasant aroma, as well as keeping the bug population at bay.

Proud member of APA, ABA, ASBC, MCCA, JBBA, LIPS.

Winner, Marans Chicken Club USA Egg contest Jan. 2013 Northeast Poultry Congress. My girls rock!

 

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Proud member of APA, ABA, ASBC, MCCA, JBBA, LIPS.

Winner, Marans Chicken Club USA Egg contest Jan. 2013 Northeast Poultry Congress. My girls rock!

 

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