New blogger Kacey Bradley shares useful tips for keeping your coops clean using natural products.
A clean coop makes clean chickens, and clean chickens make productive chickens. It is important to keep your chicken coop clean and free of insects, pests and bacteria, but how do you do this without the use of harmful chemicals? There are a lot of effective, natural cleaning remedies at your disposal.
Using natural, organic cleaning products is healthier and better for the environment. Check out some of these natural remedies below.
What Herbs Can I Use in My Chicken Coop?
Different herbs will give you different results. You can use lime, lavender, mint, cinnamon, pine, orange peels, vanilla beans, lemon, thyme, and more. Depending on the specific results you’re looking for, there are myriad combinations to get the desired results. Here are a few of our favorite ingredients –
- Cinnamon: Repels insects and can kill mosquito larvae
- Pine: Repels insects
- Mint: Can help clear up a mouse problem
- Lemon oil: Repels insects
- Thyme: Is an anti-parasitic and fly repellent
- Vanilla beans: Can repel flies, mosquitoes and insects
- Orange peels: Smell great!
When thinking about natural remedies for your chicken coop, feel free to try different combinations. Combine the herbs with vinegar and let sit for a few weeks, shaking every few days.
You can spray this mixture or just put herbs in the bedding. Chickens will love it and it will help keep the bedding clean!
What Can I Use Between Big Cleans?
White vinegar! Make sure you choose a good base for a spray and doesn’t attract unwanted pests and does the job of cleaning the coop. Harsh chemicals are harmful to your chickens. Chicken waste produces ammonia, so never use bleach. Ammonia and bleach create harmful toxins.
Other natural remedies like apple cider vinegar may sound appealing but attract pests.
There are also great natural products available but be sure to do your research first.
Is There a Substitute for White Vinegar?
Yes. Vodka! Some people hate the smell of vinegar and don’t want it in their coop. It also takes patience to mix white vinegar properly. You should ideally let white vinegar mix with herbs for a few weeks (shaking every few days).
Vodka can sit for a night or two and be ready. It also effectively kills bacteria and will evaporate quickly. This option can be more expensive.
What Can I Use for My Feeders and Waterers?
Baking soda and sunlight can help clear up your feeders and waters between big cleans. A mix of white vinegar, water and baking soda is enough to scrub away bacteria, mold and pathogens.
The most important part of any combination is to be sure to scrub thoroughly. Use a mixture of vinegar and water (a one to one solution) and then sprinkle on baking soda until it’s clean. Rinse off and let the sunlight do the rest.
Is Diatomaceous Earth an Effective and Natural Coop Cleaner?
Diatomaceous Earth is naturally occurring fine powder made from the fossilized remains of algae. It is safe around animals and can act as an effective natural pest deterrent. Used around coop bedding and dust bathing areas, DE can reduce the number of larvae and flies in your chicken coop.
Purchase food-grade diatomaceous earth, not what is used for pools, and always wear a mask, as DE can cause lung irritation. Make sure to let it settle before allowing the chickens back into the coop.
Is There More I Should Know?
Absolutely! Keeping your chicken coop clean is hard work. Keep trying natural, clean remedies to find what works for you.
Kacey Bradley is the blogger behind The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, SUCCESS, Guides for Brides, Hotel Online and more!