Forget the shoes…
I have a bad habit of impulse buying chickens.
Our new chicks are coming in two weeks, and I am determined to be better educated and prepared this time around. We purchased our last flock of hens and brought them home without anything being ready. And while everything worked out fine in the end, this time, I want to avoid the stress and hurry of bringing home chickens and not being fully prepared.
For the last several weeks, I have been working on preparing our coop. I want to give our new chicks the best start possible.
In doing some research, I’ve found that it is highly recommended to sanitize and disinfect your chicken coop before bringing in a new flock, especially if they are chicks. Chicks are more susceptible to diseases or bugs that your old flock may have been carrying.
UPDATE: I have to say that I’m not as “disinfectant happy” as I used to be. If you’ve been dealing with a chicken disease or illness, then by all means, disinfect that coop! But for just every-day-run-of-the-mill dirt? I’m not so sure that you need to “disinfect.” But, I’ll leave that up to you.
Even if you don’t get a new flock of birds this year, it’s a good idea to thoroughly clean out your coop on occasion. I like to do a super deep clean each spring. It just makes me feel better, so I therefore assume it makes my chickens feel better. I have no idea if that’s logical, but I’m sticking with it.
Unfortunately, many sources suggest using bleach as a disinfectant. The problem? I despise bleach. I don’t like using it around our homestead, especially when it comes in contact with our animals.
So I was excited to discover that many people suggest using vinegar as a substitute for bleach.
Yup. Plain old white vinegar.
(If you want to get extra-fancy, you could try this DIY Orange Peel Vinegar for your coop.)
How to Clean a Chicken Coop
And tell your chickens, “You’re welcome!” And if you’re really nice, add some fresh herbs to their nesting boxes, and mix up my favorite chicken coop spray recipe for a sweet-smelling coop.
If it’s summer time and you’re struggling with flies in your coop, I have an entire posts devoted to my best fly control strategies for the chicken coop.