Help!! Is bleach bad? Will fumes kill chickens?

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by averkademay, Apr 1, 2017.

  1. averkademay

    averkademay Chirping

    Dec 14, 2013
    Hey all!

    I have an old coop which is connected to a newer coop. I recently bleached the old coop with around 4-5 quarts of water with around two caps of bleach. (I heard from a friend that that would work). Anyway, it didn't occur to me until 10 min. after I had applied the bleach that my gas mask was protecting me...but what about my chickens in the newer side of the coop? The two coops are connected but separated with a wall. Realizing this I cooped up my birds inside the new side of the coop and sealed the windows shut so that the fumes from the old side of the coop would not flow out and hurt my birds. [​IMG]

    I was preparing the old coop for peafowl. The reason I used bleach was that I heard it would kill all the bacteria and any fungus so I said 'whoohoo! Thats perfect!,' nevertheless I just did a little digging and found out that it is not all that great for my birds. I also wanted to use the bleach because I had someone ask me to take care of over 100 baby chicks (all of them meat/egg production mixes) and two baby turkeys AND I used to have a flock that lived there that I moved to the newer coop. I wanted to get rid of absolutely anything that was left behind so my peafowl wouldn't get sick. I was going to use 'Steramine,' but now I am thinking twice.


    Will the fumes hurt my sweet little hens?

    (All I could smell in the coop was the stinky poo so I cleaned out their sand box and add some straw to keep them entertained)
    Was using bleach a bad idea?

    How long will it take to have the bleach become harmless, safe, and or to dry out?

    It was soaked up a bit into the boards, will it come out eventually? Also how long?

    Was bleach enough or should I spray Steramine?

    Pleaseh help and thank you to all in avance!
  2. Chickens27

    Chickens27 Hatching

    Apr 1, 2017
    The fumes from bleach can be harmful to chickens. Bleach is very effective for cleaning but isnt always the best option for cleaning a chicken coop. Just to be safe I would rinse the chicken coop out with water. I don't know how long it would take for the bleach to dry out because it depends on how warm it is. It will come out eventually, but sadly I don't know how long it will take.
  3. averkademay

    averkademay Chirping

    Dec 14, 2013
    Thank you so much for repling Chickens27!

    I will go wash out the coop as soon as I can.

    Thankz again!

    Also anymore input from anyone is greaty appreciated :-D
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2017
  4. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Crossing the Road

    Nov 7, 2012
    Agreed, the fumes can be lethal, especially if the bleach combines with any ammonia that may be in the coop from any ripe, moist manure left behind. That being said, bleach becomes totally inert as it dries. It will dessicate and kill any insects and bacteria/virus it comes in contact with if used at the right strength. On the negative side, I have a spot in my yard where I dumped some bleach water after sterilizing equipment after a processing session. It's been over a year, and the soil in that area is still completely dead. Nothing will grow there. Absolutely nothing! I've been composting over that spot all winter in hopes of bringing that spot back to life.
  5. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    It can also become inert before it kills all the 'bugs'....the more organic material, the quicker it becomes inert.

    I would just set a fan up to blow fumes away from birds and to dry it as quickly as possible.
    Aceoky likes this.
  6. averkademay

    averkademay Chirping

    Dec 14, 2013
    Hey aart! Thank you for replying!

    Well crisis averted beacue the bleach dryed way faster that I thought it would. My birds are fine and happy. thank you all for your advice! :-D
  7. Sarah99

    Sarah99 In the Brooder

    Oct 21, 2018
    what would you use instead of bleach to clean a turkey coop/ Greenhouse?
  8. lutherpug

    lutherpug Songster

    Jan 5, 2014
    Northeast Kansas
    When I was in college I worked at a pet store and we used a 10:1 water/bleach mix to clean everything. As others have stated, rinse it well with clean water once you've cleaned and then let it dry. Cheap, easy, and effective.
    aart likes this.
  9. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler!

    Nov 27, 2012
    SW Michigan
    My Coop
    Bleach if fine if used carefully......lots of ventilation and let it dry and air out before putting animals back in there.
    First @Sarah99 I would ask why do you need to 'clean'?
    Did you have diseased birds?
    I hope you don't need to do it now, winter where you are not a good time to be cleaning.
  10. R2elk

    R2elk Free Ranger

    Feb 24, 2013
    Natrona County, Wyoming
    She lives in a northern climate and is building a greenhouse to house the tropical Ocellated turkeys. Since they are not acclimated to the area, they may be very susceptible to any diseases that may or may not be seriously harmful to the local poultry.

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