1. chicken_love

    chicken_love In the Brooder

    Jun 30, 2007
    Our neighbors have a huge chicken coop, and they clean it once a year. But when they clean it, it's a huge deal. We help them, and have to wear masks, and it takes hours. Is there anyway to do this easier, maybe in the construction of the coop? And if not, is there a specific way to clean the coop that makes it easier?
  2. poppycat

    poppycat Songster

    Jan 26, 2007
    I would think that the amount of cleaning really depends on how many chickens you have. If you have, say, 200 birds it would definitely take all day, or maybe even all weekend!

    I have seven chickens and it is pretty quick.

    Every other day I scrape poo out from under the roost.

    Every other week I rake the run.

    Twice a year I hose down the inside and outside of the coop, wash the windows, shovel fresh dirt in the run, repair any spots in the wire that look a little worn, scub the nest boxes ummmm thats all I can think of. I did this last week and it took four hours to do by myself. If my husband is available to help it takes about half the time.

    Having a dropping board under the roosts really helps speed up cleanup. It catches the majority of the droppings and you just pull it out, scrape it and then replace it.
  3. chicken_love

    chicken_love In the Brooder

    Jun 30, 2007
    Thanks [​IMG] I'll have fun...[​IMG]
  4. horsewishr

    horsewishr Songster

    Jul 7, 2007
    West Michigan
    I'm new to chickens, and wondered the same thing. But I have been THRILLED with the EASE of my new hen house. Following suggestions I've heard elsewhere, this is what I've done:

    1) Use the deep-bedding method. I have a wood floor and use 3-4" of pine shavings. I stir the shavings every couple of days, and everything stays DRY and odorless. I top off with extra bedding if the old stuff is starting to break down too much. I stripped the bedding once, after about 6 weeks, just 'cause I felt like I shoud. It definitely didn't need it. According to those who use this method, you should only have to replace the bedding every six months!!!

    2) Have NOTHING inside the coop the chickens can sit on and poop all over. My hen house is a 4x8 ft square (I have 4 hens, but will be getting more). The feeder is suspended from the ceiling (I used a trailer tie from my horse trailer). The waterer sits on top of a stack of bricks. The girls can get water, but they can't stand on/in the waterer. The nest box is accessible from inside the coop, but hangs outside of it--so the hens can't sit on top of it.

    3) I have a 2x3" roost pole. Poop falls into the bedding below--and I just stir it up.

    I'm thoroughly convinced that my coop will only really need to be cleaned every few months. And cleaning just means forking out the old bedding and putting in new stuff. The floor stays clean and dry under the bedding.

    I've wanted chickens for years, but I was afraid to get them because of the mess. I can't tell you how happy I am with my CLEAN chicken coop.

    (My house is a mess, but that's another story!)
  5. ozark hen

    ozark hen Living My Dream

    Apr 4, 2007
    Mansfield, MO
    [​IMG] the house part. Sounds like me!! I would much rather be doing something in the coop or with the chickens than clean house!! Company coming is a very good incentive for me!! I have to plan barbeques on a reg basis to keep the house clean. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2007
  6. I like the idea of putting something under the roosts as that is where the majority of hen poop is. I clean the out under there about once a week. Less often in the winter, but I plan on doing them next week, so will put something down. Thanks. Yup. What is House cleaning. [​IMG] I try, but my hearts not really in it. The horse and the chickens are clean. Merry
  7. aran

    aran Songster

    Apr 28, 2007
    rochester ny
    ozark that is hilarious...im so glad its not just me and my wife who live like that! It seems unless we have guests over the "spring cleaning" never happens! just a quick tidy and thats about it!

    Im planning on not changing my coop bedding too often either...looks pretty good in there after 7 weeks!
  8. George in NH

    George in NH In the Brooder

    Mar 18, 2007
    I had a couple hundred chickens one year. The coop was very easy to keep clean during the warmer months but once winter hit that was another story. I had to wait until spring to clean out the winter bedding. I was thankful I had thought ahead and had a window put in low that opened out. I was able to shovel the bedding out the window. It took about two hours to remove the bedding which wasn't too bad but it sure did make my back sore.

    As far as cleaning the house, I tell my friends and family that I keep it country casual:) I will clean it just to the point that it is comfortable but not spotless. I used too keep my house spotless and liked it clean, the only problem is the cleaner you keep your house the more nuts you'll go trying to keep it spotless. I find I am much more relaxed realizing that my house is for me to live in and be comfortable; it is not a showplace for family and friends. I have more important things to do in my life then keeping my house sparkling clean, I have to rake around the coop, watch the chickens, collect eggs, feed and water. There's so much outside going on to keep me entertained and relaxed. I figure why ruin a good thing by staying in the house cleaning. I do wish I'd take my shoes off everytime I come in from outside. People think I keep my house very clean. My secret is to pull down the shades when I know people are going to be stopping by.

  9. mommahento5

    mommahento5 Songster

    Jul 6, 2007
    South East Indiana
    When we built our coop we made a "clean-out door". It is about 2 feet long and about 18 inches high and flips up, but to the outside. It was built at ground level so all we have to do is use a snow scoop and push all the litter right out the wall. We built it under the roosts as we assume that will be the area that will need cleaned most often. Our roosts pop out with just loosening a few screws, so if we need to do the whole coop, it is all equally accessible. I turn the litter about once every other week or so, and throw some scratch in there inbetween times so the chickens scrath it nice and fluffy. They have been in there for 2 months now, and I have not changed the littler yet, I just add whenever it looks like it is getting thin in spots. Don't know how it will all work in the winter.... Oh yeah, we do have a concrete floor, so if need be, I can spray the whole thing down. I only plan to do that once a year (in spring) unless my babies get sick or something.
  10. jkm

    jkm Songster

    Mar 28, 2007
    Forest Grove
    I live in the dense city, I have five possible four girls and a roo, sigh.
    I had a huge fly problem this year, so I clean out the coop every two weeks, takes me ten minutes to rake and haul off to the garden as compost. coop is 40 x 40 inches.
    Deep litter just didn't do too well,
    today i deal with the mice.... sigh I have made a lot of novice mistakes.
    I like a really clean house, clean groomed dogs and clean sheets, so guess the chicks are going to live at the hilton....

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