Tag Archives: red mite

Cleaning the coops

Today was cleaning out the henhouses day. We use a product called Aubiose for litter. It’s intended as horse bedding, but it’s absolutely brilliant for poultry. With an interim top-up, it means we only have to do a deep clean once a month.

We start by cleaning the house out thoroughly and checking for red mite, especially on the roosting bars. If we find any, the bar ends are dipped in creosote, and we also creosote the entire house every year. No problems today, I’m glad to say. Then the house is given a good scattering of diatomaceous earth, which also acts against mites.

Henhouse 001a
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Chickens’ New Home

We’ve spent the last week or so reinforcing the second run at the allotment, which was broken into by a fox last year. Another layer of heavier duty weldmesh has been added to the bottom half.

Last night was the night that this year’s newly hatched chickens moved from the back garden, where they were getting a bit cramped, to the allotment. We moved them at dusk, putting them into the house and hoping they’d roost straight away, but they were having none of it, and came straight out into the run. I was a wee bit worried that the smell of the creosote that I’d used against red mite had put them off, but I needn’t have worried. When we checked on them after dark, they were roosting snugly.

Garden Hens 005a
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Creosoting and foxproofing

The last blog entry on the poultry project took us up to the installation of the basic foundations of the coop and run. The next stage has been to move the hen house onto the site and foxproof the run.

The house has been sitting quietly on the trailer for a month, whilst we’ve been on holiday. I’d forgotten just how heavy most of the panels were. When I loaded up, not only did I have the help of the seller, but we had only a few yards to carry them. Unloading, Jean and I had a long walk from the allotment gates to our plot with each large and clumsy panel.
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