Last May we got our five lovely bantam girls. As summer approaches I am very heavy-heartedly thinking of re-homing them. The fly problem we had last year was horrendous. Not so much in the coop or the walk-in run (which has a thick layer of sand in the bottom) but around the patio outside our back doors. Our girls free range all day in our large back garden and so there is poo around the garden. Twice a day last year I would pick up big poos around the garden and on the patio, and spray down the whole thing. I hate to think of the water wastage! But even then the tiniest spot of poo brought flies in droves. I had those liquid fly traps around (which aren’t cheap) and they filled up rapidly. They were inevitably in the house too - lots of them. Was last year a bad year for flies or is this what we will have to deal with again this year? Is there anything I can do to prevent it being so bad? Is this just what comes with climate change? I love my hens so much but the thought of going through it all again all summer long makes my heart sink. We also had a horrible red mite infestation last year but I know how to control that and am not worried about all the hard work that comes with it. But the flies?! Any words of advice?