winterizing and coop humidity

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by freedom chick, Nov 19, 2014.

  1. freedom chick

    freedom chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Hello all :)

    I am new to this site. I have come to back yard chickens for help on so many things but this is my first post.

    My husband and I decided to change to a larger coop. Its an 8x12 ft shed we had built. We figured the birds would winter better with space, and that it would be easier to manage and clean. It is vented on both ends near the pitch for cross ventilation. My husband insulated the inside with good insulation and hung plywood interior walls 6ft 6 inches. ceiling is open.
    Everything I have read has talked about proper ventilation and how important it is.
    Why is my coop 30 degrees with 80% humidity??

    This is making me so nervous.
    I clean the coop just about everyday by scooping, so poo is not problem I do have feeder/waterer inside with a warmer I made from a cookie tin and lighting kit, to prevent water from freezing.

    I am really hoping my cheap tractor supply thermometer/humidity gauge is faulty.

    Any suggestion?
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2014
  2. SunkenRoadFarms

    SunkenRoadFarms Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Move the water outside. This will really help bring down the humidity. Also, do you have any windows or vents lower? You really want to bring in cold, dry air lower (but not so low is creates a draft "up the girls skirts") to push the warm, moist air out the top.
     
  3. iwiw60

    iwiw60 Overrun With Chickens

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  4. JackE

    JackE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The big question here is, How many birds do you have in the coop? If your humidity is high, that's telling me, you have no where near enough ventilation/fresh air flow in the coop, for the number of birds. Are you seeing frost inside the coop? If not, maybe your gauge is wrong. Other than that, I remember last year somebody had trouble with high humidity in their coop. They lived up in the mountains somewhere, and it turned out, that the ambient humidity level was just high up there. You can't get the humidity level down in the coop, if it's high outside the coop. But if that's not the problem where you are, open the coop up more. Get more fresh air in there. As far as the water fount goes, I have mine in the coop, with a cookie tin heater, and it doesn't do anything, as far as the coop's humidity level goes. So you can probably just leave it in the coop.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2014
  5. Toddrick

    Toddrick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I bet your gauge is off. The remote monitoring gauges especially seem to often read high for humidity (based on my experience and Amazon reviews). I found a good remote monitor (Acurite with three remotes), but it still often reads 70% humidity. I've been reading other posts on the subject too, and everyone is reporting up to 70% humidity. So I guess that is not too high, but 80%--if it is correct--seems high. My advice is to get another gauge to verify before taking any action.
     
  6. freedom chick

    freedom chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Thanks guys :)

    I have 6 girls in this palace. They have lots of room.

    No frost inside the coop.

    The vents are up where the roof pitch is, one on each side directly across from each other. I really thought I planned this correctly.
     
  7. JackE

    JackE Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yeah, if your humidity was that high, you would probably see some frost. Your gauge may just be an example of fine 'RedChinese' engineering.
     
  8. freedom chick

    freedom chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    I got a new gauge today. We will see what happens...
     
  9. pdirt

    pdirt Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You could also test your gauge outside of the coop and/or inside your house. If there is a dramatic difference, that will tell you something, even if your gauge is off-kilter. For example, if you end up recording 45% inside your home and 55% outside, then you certainly know your coop is higher in humidity (even if it isn't actually 80%) and you will want to remedy that. You could also test it in the bathroom while running a hot shower and you should be able to record 100%...or close to it. Burning a wood-burning stove would be a good way to reduce the humidity in your home, to test the gauge.
     
  10. freedom chick

    freedom chick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Good outcome :)
    New gauge reads 30 degrees w/ 40-50% humidity. Old gauge going back.

    So silly. The hoops I jump through for my girls.

    Thank you everybody!
     

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