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Posted: Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:42 pm
I saw a video online last night by a chap who's company makes wooden coops, and he recommended painting the inside with some kind of boat sealant to make washing out easier, and I presume to aid the fight against red mite...
Anyone come across this? And, if so, what brand?
Does it affect ventilation?
Re: Boat sealant?
Posted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 9:41 am
The only issue I can think of would be in potentially adding significant weight to the coop (if that was an issue.) With anything like that it must be dry/hard/solvent clear before the birds can use it which may take a long time. I'm only familiar with 'red lead and putty' and only for sealing wooden boats - that stuff takes years to 'go off'.
But you don't really need to wash out a coop very often as long as it has bedding/flooring in it to remove and replace. You could certainly make a wooden coop unattractive to mite by filling the gaps, cracks and corners. Diatom paste painted into the corners is highly recommended - would wash out (if the inside was washed) and need re-doing but is instantly habitable.
Mite don't like plastic and you only get a plastic to plastic perch end (hot favourite hang out for mite) in a plastic coop.
As long as the intentional ventilation is adequate (as it should be) it wouldn't be a problem filling/painting the rest of the construction.
Re: Boat sealant?
Posted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 11:47 am
Rick rightly points up the issue of drying time when wooden coops are treated with any sort of preservative. In direct, hot summer sunshine, effective wood preservatives (those continuing spirit-based ingredients, or traditional creosote) take at least 48 hours or more to dry and for the fumes to disperse enough for the chickens to return. In normal cool UK conditions, and especially in freezing weather, you're likely to be stuck for days, or even weeks in winter, consequently you need a second coop for the hens in the meantime.
I think painting the inside a coop is unnecessary in any case. It would do nothing to stop redmite, best to stick to diatomaceous earth slurry painted into the cracks and joins. The walls just don't get dirty if theres enough perch room for the hens to roost, and redmite are not found on walls unless you have a mega-infestation.
Or get a plastic one, of course, and save yourself years of problems.
Re: Boat sealant?
Posted: Sun Dec 17, 2017 12:17 pm
One advantage of wooden coops is they 'breathe', so condensation isn't an issue. It becomes one when they are painted inside though because that seals the wood. We get condensation on the ceilings which are painted gloss white to improve light levels. You will also get condensation on plywood as the layers of bonding glue effectively seal the panels.
Our coops are painted outside with microporous paint which stops water getting in, but still allows the wood to breathe. You could use that inside as well if you want, but wood expands and contracts and any paint will split at the wood joints. Boats remain at constant humidity so that wood movement wouldn't be a problem I think. I doubt boat sealant will offer any advantage over simple good husbandry i.e. keeping the coop clean inside.
I would leave a creosoted coop at least two weeks in Summer and perhaps two months in Winter. When creosote gets warm in the sun it gives off fumes, even if it seemed odourless previously- nasty stuff best avoided.