Ventilation V Warmth

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BabyBantam
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Ventilation V Warmth

Post by BabyBantam »

Has anyone out there got a Forsham Ark?
Due to the cold weather (& having just administered antibyotics for chest infections to all 3 birds), I've just bought 2 clear plastic corrigated sheets - to allow some air flow - and secured them to either side of my ark. I've got a run extention attached, so only 3 sides of the actual ark are 'boarded', but wondered if this might create a damp issue?
The run below & housing above now seems a lot warmer and the chooks seem happy enough not to want to go into the open end of the run now, but the sawdust in the housing seems very slightly damp & not sure if it's due to the closing of the howling gale beneath the sleeping birds, or due to the constant rain, drizzle, frost, ice, sun cycle going on in Devon!?
As I said, the plastic is corrigated, so lots of air holes at each end, but there is condensation on the inside of the plastic.
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BabyBantam
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Re: Ventilation V Warmth

Post by BabyBantam »

PS - I've got an Ark big enough for 5 to 7 medium birds, but only got 3 bantams in there!
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chrismahon
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Re: Ventilation V Warmth

Post by chrismahon »

Trouble is Babybantam, the humidity is very high at the moment. No matter how much air goes through it can't collect any water as it is already saturated -95% says the weather page. We've even got condensation under the plastic roof of the run, which is open on 3 sides, for the first time I've noticed.
I would suggest not using sawdust in Winter as it doesn't absorb much water. We have switched from wood shavings to Aubiose, which is crushed and dried plant stems used for horse bedding. Keeps the coops noticeably drier. Although it is more expensive it lasts longer because it doesn't need changing constantly due to damp. Obviously if the bedding is damp mould spores will grow and you've got chest infections again. The howling gale under the floor will normally dry it out, but not at the moment.
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foxy
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Re: Ventilation V Warmth

Post by foxy »

Echo above :-)17 . They will keep surprisingly warm by huddling together, plus you have the right size of housing for the number of birds you have.
Forsham arks are excellent (I have two! :D ) and made from good quality wood with reasonable thickness. The main thing is to try and avoid too much damp and condensation if you can in the ark itself.

What sort of ark do you have? one with a run attached to the side or underneath? I wouldn't have thought it necessary to have the plastic against the ark, but alongside the run would be fine! :D
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BabyBantam
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Re: Ventilation V Warmth

Post by BabyBantam »

Hi Foxy,
I have a Broughton 902A I think. It's triangular shaped with the house above the run and a drawbridge that drops down. The plastic does not cover the upstairs, just the run below as my pekins where being battered by winds and rain was turning the run below into a mudbath and they where constantly wet. The run attached is home made, long and low and attaches to the door shape at one end. It has a flat meshed roof (instead of a wooden house on top) and also now has a clear plastic roof, but no sides.
I've been careful not to block any of the vent holes in the actual house. My babies squish into such a tiny space that they'd probably take up less than half a shoebox but I hear them sneezing at night and the eggs are so cold coming out of the nest in the evening, they feel like theyv'e been left in a fridge.
Will try looking into Chismahon' alternative to sawdust, but money is an issue.
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chrismahon
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Re: Ventilation V Warmth

Post by chrismahon »

Just bought some at £10.20 per large bag/bale. 2 lasts us 6 Winter months and we have 9 coops of various sizes -40 chickens in total. One should last you over a year then, but we don't use it in Summer as it gets dusty -we switch back to shavings.
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BabyBantam
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Re: Ventilation V Warmth

Post by BabyBantam »

Thanks :) Will track some down.
Philcott
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Re: Ventilation V Warmth

Post by Philcott »

BabyBantam - try Respite for your birds sniffles - it stinks to high heaven, but is very good for colds etc. Believe Herban is also good, but haven't tried it myself. If you can't get Aubiose try using Rapport - it's what I use in my coops and it stays remarkably dry.

I had a water pipe burst on my auto drinkers in the breeding shed last week (dumped about 50 litres of water onto the floor of six pens!) and used Rapport to soak it all up. Worked well - granted the floor itself was still damp, but no standing water! About £9.00 a bale I think.
Breed Registrar for Autosexing Poultry on behalf of the Rare Poultry Society.
www.autosexing-poultry.co.uk
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