how often do you clean your coop and nest boxes?

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by mommy4cdjm, Aug 6, 2009.

  1. mommy4cdjm

    mommy4cdjm In the Brooder

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    May 14, 2009
    ok so I had read up on the deep litter method and such but now that I actually have a coop I am wondering what people actually do to keep their coop clean. I feel like I am doing this all wrong.

    I have noticed that the nest boxes have been getting pretty gross very quick. So do you clean them more often then the rest of the coop?

    Also what do you use for bedding? and do you spread it through the whole coop?

    I have been buying shavings for bedding but I seem to go through them very fast. maybe not the best choice.


    Thanks for any advice
    Heather
     
    toriyr likes this.
  2. CheerfulHeart2

    CheerfulHeart2 Creative Problem Solver

    Apr 8, 2009
    Phoenix, AZ
  3. ColoradoMike

    ColoradoMike Songster

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    Quote:I'm a newbie and haven't allowed access to my nest boxes yet - we're expecting eggs in another month or so....

    but...

    Based on my reading and things I've seen on BYC, it seems to me that if your coop is set up properly, then there shouldn't be as much mess in the nest boxes. In other words, are your birds roosting in there? Are your roosts higher than the boxes?

    As I said, I'm new at this and have just finished building our nest boxes and haven't opened them up for business yet, but I am hoping (perhaps naively) that the boxes won't get as dirty as the rest of the coop...
     
  4. M To The Maxx

    M To The Maxx Baseball+Girls=Life

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    I clean my coops once a week.
     
  5. barredcountrycoop

    barredcountrycoop In the Brooder

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    I keep the floor of the box in my coop covered with pine shavings which I buy for around 6 bucks at a feed and seed. comes in a bale. Once a week I take out the shavings and put in new shavings. It keeps the floor in the box clean. A bale probably lasts two months, now the box with the roosts and nest boxes isn't very big I only have 6 in it, but the shavings do a good job and are easy to use. During the week if it starts getting really dirty I (with gloves on ) get the poop out and replace however much shavings is needed, and then at the end of the week change it all. you can see how big my box is on my page. My plan is once a year to clean it out and scrub it with bleach just for extra sanitation, but in six months it has stayed fairly clean.
     
  6. StacyK

    StacyK In the Brooder

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    May 20, 2009
    Sumner, WA
    My coop is fairly small & I have been debating on deep litter or cleaning out. So far I've been taking a little out when I add more shavings, so it kind of evens out & isn't smelly much at all.

    My question though for those who do take all the shavings out once every week or two...what the heck do you do with all the shavings? It's my understanding they take a long time to break down, so composting doesn't work well. We do have an area we throw weeds, grass, etc., but it seems the shavings/litter would pile up quickly. Thanks for any ideas!
     
  7. mommy4cdjm

    mommy4cdjm In the Brooder

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    May 14, 2009
    thanks for the link and advice.

    as for the nest boxes. I am a newbie and think maybe this isn't how it should go. I have 8 chickens. When they go in the coop to go to bed they don't seem to get that the coop is pretty roomy. They all try to be as close to the front door as possible. So several will be on the roost there and then the others will all sleep in the first nest box... which means like 4 chickens crammed in one box... which equals lots of poop. The nest boxes are off the ground by like 10-12 inches and then the roost is about 2 or 3 inches higher then that. There is still plenty of room on the roost since it goes the entire length of the coop. There are also 7 other boxes.
     
  8. Judy

    Judy Crowing

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    I would block the nest boxes off, either at night if they are laying, or 24/7 if they are still too young to lay. No sleeping in nest boxes allowed here. Makes for poopy eggs.

    If they are crowding near the front door, I suspect there is not enough ventilation in there, and that is where the fresh air is.

    I clean a coop out between 2 and 4 times a year. I add pine shavings, DE, and pelleted lime to the litter to keep it odor free. The poop dries and sifts to the bottom. There are other products like stall-dri that also help, I have read.

    Here's another link, on ventilation:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=1642-VENTILATION
     
  9. mommy4cdjm

    mommy4cdjm In the Brooder

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    May 14, 2009
    Thanks for the advice. I will try blocking off the nest boxes or removing them for now. I doubt it is a ventilation issue. The door on the rear is much larger so I can clean. There are 4 windows and also 2 vents. So they are not any closer to the air flow where they are. Seems they just all jump in the first place they find when they go in. [​IMG]
     
  10. ColoradoMike

    ColoradoMike Songster

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    Northern Colorado
    Mine piled up to sleep when they were small and I first put them in the coop, but after a few weeks they began roosting properly.

    How old are your chicks? Also, show us some pics! I love to see different coop/run setups!

    [​IMG]
     

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