So, seriously, how bad is the smell???

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by ADVaughn, Sep 8, 2016.

  1. ADVaughn

    ADVaughn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok, I live on the edge of town in an established neighborhood on a .40 acre lot. The bulk of the yard is in the back and is fenced in. I was considering putting the coop and run on the garage side of the house where it would be out of the way and not be smack dab in the middle of the yard. But, I have read in various areas that it would stink up the house if I'm too close. So how much of a problem is this really for someone considering what I am?

    Thanks!
     
  2. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Stink is usually caused by a few issues. First would be inadequate ventilation in the coop. Second would be that you have too many birds for the space. And last would be poor care and maintenance.
    I have had no problems with smell, and my coop is only about 10 feet from the house. And at one point this summer I had over 33 birds of varying ages.
     
  3. LRH97

    LRH97 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    x2. If you have the three things junebuggena said (good ventilation, no over-crowding, and good coop maintenance), you shouldn't have any problems with smell. I have a flock of around 40 and there is no smell from the coop.
     
  4. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Basically, if your coop stinks, your doing something wrong.
     
  5. ADVaughn

    ADVaughn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks! I've read that with proper cleaning it shouldn't be an issue. Especially for the 10-15 birds I plan to eventually have. But this other resource seemed quite adamant that smell and flies will happen period.
     
  6. junebuggena

    junebuggena Chicken Obsessed

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    Flies will happen. Where there is poo, there will be flies. No way around that. Smell, not so much.
    I find that my dogs' poo tends to attract more flies than the chicken poo.
     
  7. lazy gardener

    lazy gardener Flock Master

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    Why so many birds? On a small plot like that, I'd consider 4 - 6 to be a good size. And then 6 b/c most state regs insist on the buyer purchasing a minimum of 6 chicks. Even if you manage your coop and run well at 4 s.f in coop and 10 s.f. in run/bird (bare minimum) you are going to have to manage all of that litter/poop. The easiest way to do so is with deep litter in both coop and run. Bee kissed is your resource for that issue. A well managed DL system has no odor. (coop on bare soil) In fact, I consider the dog bombs in the yard to be much more of an issue than chicken bombs.

    Is your neighborhood zoned for chickens? And will your coop be at least as far away from neighbor's houses as it will be from your own???
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2016
  8. aart

    aart Chicken Juggler! Premium Member

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    Keep in mind that odor can be highly subjective...some folks have better sniffers than others.
    It can also be a matter of 'what you're used to, as well as overall perception.

    I use sand/PDZ(mineral zeolite absorbs ammonia) on roost boards, sifting out poops every other day.
    Kiln dried pine shaving on floor dry up poops well.
    Keeping things dry is key to odor control.....spilled waterers, leaky coops...are gonna stink.

    You can keep your coop well maintained.... but on hot, humid days it can still be pret-ty fragrant.

    The run is another aspect, when I just had dirt out there(sandy soil that drained well) after heavy rain and during snow melt season...PeeeYoooo!!
    Adding some dry plant matter(a mix of wood chips, a bit of straw and/or hay, there's many other options to add to the mix) helped enormously and almost immediately.

    Whether you'll be able to smell it in the house, might depend on your prevailing winds, if you keep your windows open all year round, etc etc.
    Zoning and neighbors, as LG pointed out, is another important consideration....for noise as well as odors.
    Even if you don't have cockbirds, pullets and hens can make quite a racket!
     
  9. ADVaughn

    ADVaughn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I figure on 10 birds because that should ensure a decent supply of eggs and allow for some variety as well. I would only look at growing the flock beyond that if we somehow became more dependent on the flock for food, both meat and eggs.

    Where I'm considering putting it would be closer to my house than the neighbor's on that side. Plus, I don't think they have any Windows on that side of their house and those neighbors aren't full-time residents there anyway. The other side of the house is next to the kids bedrooms and the gate to the front yard so that wouldn't work. I could put them a bit away from the house under a tree we have out back but my wife wants a playhouse for our son too.

    I'm also wanting to put in raised beds for a garden and would utilize manure and compost from the chickens to fertilize. So I'm wanting to keep my backyard projects close to each other and out of the way as much as possible.
     
  10. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Good advice already.

    I'm just going to add a plug for predator wasps for fly control. this has been my first year using them and I'm totally sold. We have an acre with horses, goats, dogs, cats and triple digit chickens. That's a lot of poop, which means a lot of flies most of the time. I went through Spalding Labs and had them ship the predator wasps throughout the summer and have been thrilled. Way, way less flies this year. Cost is reasonable and they're very friendly and can advise you on what will work best for your area and amount of animals.
     

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