Hello from Bulgaria

Welcome to the poultrykeeper.com forum. Read our rules and say hello if you are new here.

Moderator: pebojuno

Hello from Bulgaria

Postby saraht » Fri May 26, 2017 8:06 pm

Hello everyone
I came across this forum while researching plastic chicken houses. I found it was full of useful information so thought I would join up because you all sound so knowledgable and friendly.
I hope to be chatting with you all soon.
Sarah
saraht
Newcomer / Hatchling
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 26, 2017 6:14 pm

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby bigyetiman » Fri May 26, 2017 8:56 pm

Hello and a big welcome from Essex. You will certainly find lots of useful info on here from many learned people.
bigyetiman
Regular Forum Contributor / Laying Well
 
Posts: 231
Joined: Tue May 16, 2017 8:27 pm

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby saraht » Sat May 27, 2017 10:36 am

Thanks for the welcome bigyetiman. I look forward to discovering all the useful info, I'm certainly in quite a pickle at the moment.
My current mission is to find a suitable hen house for the chickens. They are have been put into temporary accommodation (a large dog crate/cage with perches) during the evening which is less than ideal. This is in my barn at the moment which is mostly sealed off, except for a few gaps near the roof, so they aren't as exposed as it sounds. I decided it was kinder than locking them up with the red mite every night because I can take the crate to pieces and clean it every day. I burnt down their chicken house a couple of days ago after struggling to rid it of red mite for two weeks. I have been looking at plastic houses and wondering why there seems to be none available, other than Omlet's, in Europe (except UK). Perhaps it is because they are only suitable for a climate similar to the UK. I have been going round and round in circles on the internet and I am not getting very far. I am torn between ordering one and having it sent to Bulgaria or attempting to build something myself with bricks, render it and paint it so I can wash it down. At the same time I have also been hit with a fortnight of non-stop rain and I have nothing at all dry for them to dust themselves in to get rid of the mites. To add to this our garden is like a swamp and they are not keen on spending time inside the barn during the day as the floor is concrete so they are constantly damp. I have leant shelters against walls around the garden for them but they are so soggy. Hey ho, we will get through this!
saraht
Newcomer / Hatchling
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 26, 2017 6:14 pm

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby chrismahon » Sat May 27, 2017 11:32 am

Hello and welcome Saraht. You may find plastic distorts badly in hot temperatures- we brought a Solway over from the UK and there is no way we would risk it outside in Summer (I am a retired plastics engineer). I don't expect an Omlet coop would survive down here either. The other factor is the lack of sufficient ventilation with coops built for an English climate. We have 10% of the floor area as ventilation, with 5% either side to get a good through draught in Summer and at times that is still insufficient and the pop-holes or even the side doors have to be opened.

Red mite is a real problem but we have evolved an effective treatment using a portable steamer with a fine jet. All our coops are wood and are not affected by the treatment.
User avatar
chrismahon
Forum Guru / Wise Bird
 
Posts: 4925
Joined: Tue May 17, 2011 10:29 am
Location: Gascony, France

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby MrsBiscuit » Sat May 27, 2017 11:57 am

Hi Sarah, welcome :D

I am not sure how hot it gets in Bulgaria, but I had both plastic and wooden coops in the UK, but I wouldn't use plastic in Portugal where I am now. Our summer temps are routinely in 30s with a week or so in the 40s. Conversely we get mega wet winters and I am not sure there is enough ventilation either as Chris says. Most people here use old stone outbuildings or breeze block constructions as shade and cool are of paramount importance. I don't have any chooks myself so I am not sure how easy it is to control red mite in either, but then again I don't know how prevalent it is in a different climate.
MrsBiscuit
Regular Forum Contributor / Laying Well
 
Posts: 139
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2013 12:02 pm

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby rick » Sat May 27, 2017 12:13 pm

Hi Sarah,
I admit I have some hair brain ideas but this one with red mite seems to be working well-
For a week now I've been lifting the rubber car mat under the roost bar and found no mite but this morning there was a little cluster of them in the corner - so they were squished. Relies on there not being more tempting places nearer to the perch to hide in the day of course.
Red mite (and lice) really don't like diatom earth. If there is some under the mat then you can see them clustering away from it so I don't put it under the mat as it spoils the trap but do dust the cracks (I think Dinosaw on here makes a slurry of it and paints it on) at the far end of the perch to put them off that option.
User avatar
rick
Part of the Flock
 
Posts: 1072
Joined: Sun Aug 31, 2014 12:52 pm
Location: Warwickshire UK

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby saraht » Sat May 27, 2017 3:44 pm

Wow! Thank you all for your replies. What lovely people on this forum.
We are going to try and build something in the barn that is similar in shape to a plastic Keter garden storage shed with a lid/roof that lifts up and two large doors that open at the front. I was thinking of this design so I can get in and clean it easily. We plan to make it out of brick and put in ventilation holes. It will be rendered and painted so that it can be washed down easily. The roof will be corrugated metal so there are extra small ventilation holes and we are still trying to think what to use for the doors. At least that's the plan, if anyone has any thoughts or suggestions on this we are still in the planning phase. Tomorrow the building phase starts!
We will need two houses eventually. If we did buy a plastic coop we were thinking of having it completely out of the sun, under the cover of our barn roof, so I don't know whether this would alter your opinions on how it would cope in hot weather. In the winter we get buried in deep snow every year so it has to be under cover. Our temperatures range from around -20 to 40˚C each year.
saraht
Newcomer / Hatchling
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 26, 2017 6:14 pm

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby valeriebutterley » Sat May 27, 2017 5:27 pm

Diatomaceous earth is the thing for keeping red mite at bay, they cannot seem to beat it. When I change bedding and flooring in the huts they always get a good squeeze of it on new bedding and nesting material, and now I seldom see them. So I think it must work.

I simply do not want my lovely girls to be overwhelmed by these bloodsucking critters. I had a "bloom" of them when I was on holiday in the Orkneys a few years ago, and my son who was looking after my chicks at the time, said the whole hut was heaving with a mass of them suddenly and inexplicably. In my granddaughters hair who was with him feeding them at the time and everywhere you looked. YUK, YUK and YUK. Apparently the DE cuts the carapace of the mites to pieces, goodbye mites.
valeriebutterley
Regular Forum Contributor / Laying Well
 
Posts: 770
Joined: Tue Nov 23, 2010 3:08 pm
Location: N.W. Surrey

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby MrsBiscuit » Sat May 27, 2017 6:38 pm

Actually I might well use a plastic house in a barn :D It probably depends on how secure the barn is. I might feel better knowing they were very safely shut up because we have Egyptian mongeese as well as roaming dogs and the odd fox here. Our stone outbuilding is a bit porous to say the least! I might even have a house and run in there if there was space, so I could leave them on the odd overnight away. Also having some sort of spare house is very useful for introductions and isolation if there is illness. I realise this sounds like overkill, I am sure if the barn is secure there is no need to be quite so gloomy, but for my own set up in Portugal, it is probably what I would do.
MrsBiscuit
Regular Forum Contributor / Laying Well
 
Posts: 139
Joined: Wed Jun 12, 2013 12:02 pm

Re: Hello from Bulgaria

Postby saraht » Sat May 27, 2017 7:30 pm

Sorry, I meant to say that we do use DE. I have been using it in the coop since getting the hens but I think we inherited a major infestation. Speaking to my neighbour it sounds like the last two people to own the house also suffered with this problem, it is possible that they were all there just waiting for the right conditions and a good meal.

Where do you buy your DE from? I need to get mine shipped into Bulgaria as there aren't any shops selling it here. Last time I got mine from Multi-Mite but I can't seem to get hold of them to buy some more. I would be looking to buy another 25kg sack.

I have burnt most of the wood now but some of the infested wooden parts are our supporting beams so I had to leave them in. Thanks for the advice on the steam chrismahom. I have a wall paper steamer somewhere so if I can dig that out I should be able to steam the remaining wood and kill any remaining mite nests. Do you think this kind of machine will work?

On the plus side I feel like I am winning. I only found 4 mites on the perches today and none under the plastic tray, I found well over a hundred yesterday. Fingers crossed for even less tomorrow. Plus the majority of my chickens wanted to go to bed tonight so I know they are feeling more comfortable already even though they are camping in a dog crate. I just need to convince my cockerel and one more chicken and I am on to a winner.
saraht
Newcomer / Hatchling
 
Posts: 8
Joined: Fri May 26, 2017 6:14 pm

Next

Return to Welcome and Forum Rules

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot] and 1 guest