Mold on the Inside Walls of my Coup

Discussion in 'Coop & Run - Design, Construction, & Maintenance' started by jim-pav, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. jim-pav

    jim-pav Out Of The Brooder

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    Hello everyone. I just went up and filled my galvanized water container, and noticed mold on all the inside walls of my coup! My heart sank. OMG, what am I doing wrong??? The coup is 8x8. There are 14 chickens inside, cochins and easter eggers. I have lenolium down on the floor. I put two bails of straw down which I changed just a week ago with fresh stuff. I change it 'bout every 3 or 4 weeks. This is my first winter with chickens. I've read many posts and most people use wood shavings on the floor which I'm going to go to next time I change it. The straw is not damp or anything right now. I touched the walls with my hand and they seem damp. All I did different this week was to add one of those TS flock blocks.. I put it in choup on the floor. They're eating it nicely. I have the galvanized feeder inside which I use pellet form egg laying feed. I have a bowl for grit and another for crushed oyster shells. There are 3 widows in the coup which I keep the top of the windows cracked about 2 inches each. I have a 100 watt light I keep on. The inside stays about 10 degrees warmer than the outside temp. I'm afraid I messed up bigtime somehow. Anyone have any ideas? I appreciate any advice. Thanks much. Jim

    My coup pic:

    [​IMG]
     
  2. oberhaslikid

    oberhaslikid Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Not enough air flow, you are gonna need more ventalation. crack the windows. The chickens will be warm enough, too much moisture is not good on them.
    Think of it this way. Put on a pair of coveralls and wear them around the house all day. Chickens have their coveralls on right now.
     
  3. WoodlandWoman

    WoodlandWoman Overrun With Chickens

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    If you have mold, you need more ventilation, to vent the excess moisture to the outside. I don't know how many chickens you have in there, but they give off a lot of moisture in their breath, as well as all the other sources in a coup.

    It's possible that putting in the flock block caused them to spend more time in the coop than usual, adding to the moisture levels. That may have just pushed it over the edge. There's nothing wrong with chickens being in the coop during the day in the winter, if you manage your ventilation and litter to accommodate it.
     
  4. jim-pav

    jim-pav Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm going up there now and opening the top of the windows around a half foot each. There will be no direct wind blowing on them as I'm opening the tops of the windows.. Thanks!!!!! [​IMG]
     
  5. Pharm Girl

    Pharm Girl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have the same issue as I have tarped my coop for winter and now the doors have mold on them. I'm sure the wall would if they weren't' made of wire. I used a water/light bleach mixture (about 1tbsp bleach to 4c. water) and used a scrubby sponge to wash down the walls a bit and kill the mold. I also had to change out the bedding from sand to pine shavings as the sand was holding moisture and spoiling the food. I probably need to take a side of plastic down which will allow more ventilation AND more rain in the coop. *sigh*
    Spring can't get here fast enough!
     
  6. elmo

    elmo Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Things to try before getting out the reciprocating saw and cutting holes in your coop to boost ventilation:

    Try the other poster's suggestion about encouraging the flock to spend more time outdoors. Move the flock block, feeder and waterer outside.

    Do you use a poop tray under the roost? If not, try one, and empty it every morning. Droppings left to decompose in the coop can add to the humidity level.

    Take a close look at the straw you put down. I've read that straw itself is prone to going mouldy in humid environments, and you know you have mold in the coop. You might want to think about pulling out the straw and replacing with pine shavings.

    Oops, forgot this wonderful link:

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/web/viewblog.php?id=1642-VENTILATION
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2011
  7. jim-pav

    jim-pav Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks Elmo. The cochins never did use the roost I put up. It's a 2x6 placed long ways up 'bout a foot or so off the floor. They have always just slept on the straw. So no poop board. The easter eggers did go up on it in the summer/fall.. but winter time I really haven't seen them sleeping on it either.

    I'm going to change to pine shavings, the heck with this straw.

    I'm going up there now to move the flock block outside.

    Thanks for all the info and the ventilation link!

    Jim
     
  8. KensingtonHens

    KensingtonHens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I used straw and it went moldy and gross pretty quick. We got a lot of rain here in san diego last month. I had black mold in the coop, on the walls and the floor and the top! I cleaned it out with water and bleach and air then painted it with a sealer/primer I had in the garage. Then the husband raised the roof for me and things have improved tremendously!!
    Also, I don't think the roost board is up high enough. They like to be as high as possible. Then you could put a poo catcher under the board. It makes it super easy to keep the place clean. Maybe even two of them stepped off each other. There are some great pictures on this Coop & Run board. Use the search too.

    Good luck and keep us posted. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2011
  9. jim-pav

    jim-pav Out Of The Brooder

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    Well, I just finished getting rid of the straw in the coup. I went to TS and bought 6 bags of wood shavings. I ended up putting down 4 bags in the coup. It's about 4 to 6 inches deep. I definitely didn't buy cedar, and I didn't buy those fine shavings. These are kinda coarse.

    I didn't get to the walls today. It's getting dark now and it's 12 degrees outside. I bought some scubbers today and will wash the walls down with a mild bleach solution tomorrow.

    I also threw outside the flock block.

    You should have heard the chickens carrying on when I was working in there. OMG, you think I was killing them. Then they acted like if they stepped on the new, never-seen-before wood shavings, it was going to instantly kill them.. LOL

    Gotta work on a better roost, higher up I guess.

    Thanks everyone!

    Jim
     
  10. KensingtonHens

    KensingtonHens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Sounds like you're doing everything you can for now. Great job!!
    [​IMG]
    Pretty cold back there?
     

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