Controlling Humidity question -

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by vweers, Dec 31, 2015.

  1. vweers

    vweers Chillin' With My Peeps

    109
    2
    61
    Apr 8, 2015
    SW Idaho
    We have done all we can figure out to do to keep the humidity down in the coop. It has been resting around 70 to 80% for a couple of weeks now but that is because it is that outside too. We have ventilation holes in the coop but not sure it will matter if the humidity is high outside too. My husband put a temperature and humidity detector in the coop so I can monitor it. We have several chickens with black on their combs even with putting Vaseline on their combs almost daily. Not sure what else we can do. We could put a few more holes in the coop at the top to help with ventilation but not sure it will help until we get out humidity down outsdie. Typically Boise is a very dry climate but apparently when we get inversions (cold air trapped in the valley, if you don't know) the humidity stays high. Never realized this before as Southern ID tends to be more arid than humid. Any ideas? OH yeah, we don't have a safe way to get electricity out to the coop this year.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2015
  2. TalkALittle

    TalkALittle Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,570
    533
    179
    Dec 15, 2014
    Massachusetts
    Short of running a dehumidifier in the coop, the best you can hope for is to have the inside humidity match the outside humidity. More ventilation won't solve the problem. You'll just be exchanging humid air for equally humid air. Sorry, but besides Vaseline (which clearly isn't doing the trick), I've got nothing to offer.
     
  3. Folly's place

    Folly's place Chicken Obsessed

    7,564
    2,054
    416
    Sep 13, 2011
    southern Michigan
    Pictures would help a lot here. "Holes" sound too small to me; Big openings high up in the roof peaks are more like it. My coop is a walk-in building, with hardware cloth over big openings up top. The coop shouldn't be damper than ambient humidity levels, and it's always pretty humid here in Michigan! Rubbing those frostbitten combs will NOT help. I've limited myself to birds with smaller combs, except for my Marans cockbird, who did have frostbitten tips last winter. Chickens produce a lot of moisture, so ventilation is very important. aart has links to good articles on the subject. Mary
     
  4. vweers

    vweers Chillin' With My Peeps

    109
    2
    61
    Apr 8, 2015
    SW Idaho

    Unfortunately we don't have a big coop and short of tearing this coop apart to do that to the roof, it can't be done until spring. I have three with combs and the others are pea combs. My maran has tip damage. The australorp has it worse now. I semi cleaned the coop to get the poop out but it is cold and very frozen here. Thanks for the input. It isn't higher than ambient humidity just about matches it.
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2015
  5. TalkALittle

    TalkALittle Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,570
    533
    179
    Dec 15, 2014
    Massachusetts
    It wouldn't hurt to look at pics, but thought the OP stated that inside humidity was the same as outside ambient humidity. That would lead me to believe inadequate ventilation is not the issue.
     
  6. TalkALittle

    TalkALittle Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,570
    533
    179
    Dec 15, 2014
    Massachusetts
    Are your vents near roost height making the birds exposed to winds? Do your birds have wind breaks when outside? Wind chill can accellerate frostbite by chilling the surface of the skin faster than it can be warmed from within.
     
  7. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    33,736
    6,861
    576
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Ditto Dat^^^
     
  8. jimbob86

    jimbob86 Chillin' With My Peeps

    371
    64
    88
    Aug 7, 2015
    Nebraska
    My Coop
    If it's below freezing outside, how is the humidity so high?

    When it gets below freezing, the moisture in the air forms frost, no?
     
  9. lynnehd

    lynnehd Chillin' With My Peeps

    762
    82
    156
    Jan 1, 2015
    Vancouver, Wa.
    I do think pics would help, along with
    *how much ventilation (sq feet) that you have
    *what bedding you are using
    *size of coop
    *number of chickens
    *what you are using for bedding

    We live in SW Washington, and had the wettest December on record, along with cold temps. My coop isn't big, and is dry, so it can be done.
     
  10. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

    33,736
    6,861
    576
    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by