The chicken coop needs to be cleaned for giving chickens a better living environment. But it can be confusing if one tries to clean it by themselves. The situation gets a little bit difficult if it has a dirt floor. It actually feels quite hard to do it by yourself.
So, how to clean a chicken coop with a dirt floor easily?
There are 3 easy methods that you can try on your own. These are the traditional cleaning method, deep litter method, and trap method. You can clean your coop easily in a very short time by using any of the three methods. Once you’re done cleaning, use bleach and water mixture to disinfect the coop.
Now, this isn’t enough to understand the cleaning process properly. You need to keep on reading this article to get a more in-depth explanation of those methods.
3 Benefits of Cleaning the Coop
We all have a chicken coop. But have we ever thought about cleaning it without being forced?
Most of us rarely do it. Because it takes a lot of time and energy to do so. But if we knew the benefits of doing it, most of us would do it on our own.
So, we’ve mentioned the benefits below-
- A healthy and good environment helps the chickens to stay healthy.
- Cleaning the coop will prevent dust and dirt from causing insects, viruses, and bacteria to spread.
- The bad smell of the coop will not only make you irritated but also your neighbor. But cleaning the coop will solve this.
Thus, it is better to clean the litter to prevent them from growing in the poultry.
3 Ways to Clean a Dirt Floor
We all face some difficulties cleaning floors. Especially if they are dirt floors. This makes us not want to clean them often. To solve your problem, we’re going to explain 3 ways. You can perform all of the 3 ways easily on your own.
But remember to wear a dust mask during cleaning. Also, spray the interior with water before cleaning. It will stop those particles from flying in the air.
Most of us want an easy and simple way to clean the coop. As it will clean the coop as well as save our time. So, the steps of this way are explained below:
Step 1: Scrape & Shovel All the Dirt
First, we have to scrape and shovel. So, start scraping and shoveling all the feathers, dirt, manure, shavings, and cobwebs out.
Step 2: Spray Water to Soften Dirt
We have to spray the floors, walls, and nesting boxes to remove the dust with a cleaner. This will soften the dirt.
Once the dirt has softened, you need to scrap again. This will help the water to easily sweep that dirt out.
Step 3: Use Vinegar to Disinfect
Now, the floor should still be wet. So, we have to pour some vinegar straight on the floor. Then scrub as thoroughly as possible. This disinfects the area.
And you won’t have to suffer from a bad smell as well. You can also use coop-based air fresheners to assist you regarding the smell.
Step 4: Rinse & Dry the Coop
Now, rinse the floor. Then let the water drain. Furthermore, open all the doors and windows to help it dry out. The sunlight will help disinfect the coop.
And that’s it! Once the coop is dried out, the chickens are welcome to come back.
Deep Litter Method
Do you want a more professional way to deeply clean your coop? This is the method for you to follow then. The steps are explained below-
Step 1: Make a Litter Pile
Firstly, stop taking the litter out for a while. This will create a base made of those litter and manure that was being piled up over time. A litter pile works the same as a compost pile.
The pile will break down due to warmth and bacterial action. Then it will help eliminate insect activity and also will reduce the foul smell. The pile will later create a dry enriched compost.
Step 2: Add Fresh Batch of Litter
We have to add a new fresh batch of litter to the litter pile now. Wood shaving is the best thing to do the job.
We can even use pine needles, bark waste, or wood chips to do the job. Though using these might take a little bit more time to break down. Also, pine resin bark and shavings can be used.
All of them will somewhat help sanitize and reduce the bad smell.
Step 3: Stir Regularly and Keep the Pile Warm
The litter has to be 10 cm deep at least if we want the process to start. It can later be double the size with adding more litter and shavings. Then mix all of it with nest materials that are regularly cleaned.
This must be stirred regularly and have to be warm. It can be either done by the chickens. Or you can do it by yourself with a fork. It will help prevent the dropping of wet skin on top of it.
Once it is warm, the good bacteria will help the fresh droppings to break down. It will help the coop stay clean, and reduce the bad smell. It will also disinfect the bad bacteria and viruses.
But remember, after a year it needs to be removed. Then it can also be used as a compost fertilizer for gardens.
This is another effective way to clean with very little resources. This method is also commonly used. Because one can clean more than 15 coops in a little more than an hour this way. The steps for this method are discussed below:
Step 1: Place the Tarp
We have to place a water-resistant sheet named tarp on the floor(our pick: B-Air Grizzly Multi-Purpose Waterproof Tarp). It will help keep the ground moisturized as well as dry.
Step 2: Put Straw and Washing it
Then put straw on top of it. If the straw needs to be changed, fold the tarp. And then throw straw and manure in the compost mass.
After that, just wash the tarp.
Step 3: Sterilize the Bedding with Vinegar or Oxine
Before we change the bedding, we have to sterilize it with vinegar or oxine. It will help the coop to stay clean and disinfected from bacteria and viruses.
And it was all the methods you can follow! A clean chicken coop is ready!
What should I put on the floor of my chicken coop?
Hemp bedding and pine shavings are the top choices. They are comparatively smaller and compost faster than the rest. It is ideal for the bottom layer as they are also inexpensive and available everywhere.
Should chicken coop be painted inside?
It is better to paint the interior of the coop. Then it will become really hard for the pest and parasites to hide in the wall. It will also protect the wall as well as make it easier to clean.
When should we clean the coop?
The bedding should be cleaned once a week. The total cleaning should be done once a year.
Hope you got a clear idea about how to clean your coop with a dirt floor.
It is necessary for you to clean your coop on a routine basis. You can try any of the methods that are convenient for you.
We wish you all the best and hope that this article was helpful for you.