Proper ventilation in the chicken coop is essential to the successful keeping of poultry. The health of birds depends not only on the feed used, but also on the indoor climate, light, humidity and temperature. If these indicators are below normal, the main part will be spent on replenishing energy, and not on increasing body weight and incubating eggs.
- The need for proper ventilation for birds
- Varieties of ventilation systems
- The main requirements for ventilation in the chicken coop
- Exhaust scheme
- Arrangement options
- Arrangement of ventilation in the chicken coop with your own hands
- Necessary materials
- Step-by-step instruction
- Features of the organization of a winter chicken coop
The need for proper ventilation for birds
Good ventilation in the poultry area is necessary for the following reasons:
- Decomposing droppings produce ammonia and hydrogen sulphide vapors. They produce a strong unpleasant odor and are very toxic to chickens.
- The need to regulate the temperature. For example, overheating in the house during the summer has a negative effect on the health of the chickens.
- Maintaining normal humidity in the house. The indicator should be in the range from 60 to 80%. If the air is very dry, a lot of dust will form in the room. But the increased moisture also negatively affects the health of the bird. In such conditions, pathogenic bacteria begin to actively multiply.
Moisture in the coop is due to dirty litter, which is rarely changed. If the room is well ventilated, moisture will escape to the outside. This will make the air cleaner and warmer.
Varieties of ventilation systems
There are several ways to organize air exchange in the house.
The simplest and most inexpensive option for organizing ventilation in a chicken coop is through ventilation. To do this, through holes are mounted in the walls, windows and doors are additionally opened during the day.
Drafts must be avoided with this type of ventilation. To do this, you need to make small holes above the door. They will cut the air flow, preventing it from amplifying. To make ventilation safe, you need to place the vents at different levels.
Through ventilation is dangerous in winter. Chickens are hard to tolerate cold and drafts. In roosters, scallops can freeze, in chickens, egg production decreases. In order to provide the birds with normal conditions, additional heating should be provided in winter if ventilation will occur naturally.
In large areas where poultry is kept, the use of a mechanical ventilation option is recommended. This is best done with more than 50 chickens. This method will provide an optimal air exchange rate in any weather. On farms where there are few birds, the cost of electricity when installing the hood will not pay off.
The mechanical method consists in installing fans. They can be complete with a control panel, can be manually adjusted.
Such a system is based on combining supply and exhaust ventilation in one room.
The main requirements for ventilation in the chicken coop
In order for the ventilation system in the chicken coop to work effectively, you must comply with the basic requirements for the room:
- It is necessary to provide the room with fresh air regularly.
- There should be no condensation on ceilings and walls, which leads to the formation of fungus.
- The volume of air should be sufficient for all birds. The more livestock, the more fresh air injection is required. This can be achieved by choosing the correct duct cross-section.
- The ventilation system must be regulated, this is necessary to reduce the risk of freezing in winter. Dampers must be installed on the air ducts. They will help supply cold air in parts. For the winter, the air ducts are closed with a fine mesh, and in severe frosts they are completely blocked.
To determine if the ventilation is working properly, you need to pay attention to how you feel in the house. If your head starts spinning, then there is not enough oxygen.
No amount of ventilation will solve the problem of clean airflow in a dirty chicken coop. If there is constantly a lot of litter inside the room, it will emit ammonia vapors constantly.
To choose the best ventilation system in the hen house, you need to take into account the following factors:
- the number of individuals and the volume of the room;
- cleaning frequency;
- content in cells or in a free way.
The air exchange should be the more intense, the more birds live on one square meter. A conventional hood can be installed if the farm contains no more than 20 chickens. For livestock up to 50 pieces, it is necessary to equip supply and exhaust ventilation. A forced system is necessary if the chickens are more than 50. More intensive air exchange must be ensured if the birds are kept in cages.
When drawing up a diagram, the following parameters must be taken into account:
- If you make a do-it-yourself hood in a chicken coop from plastic pipes, for an area of up to 12 square meters you need 2 meters of pipes with a diameter of 22 cm.
- For 1 kg of poultry, 4 m³ / hour of supply air is required.
The supply of fresh air should be increased if it is not possible to remove the droppings frequently.
Most often, farms use the option of organizing natural or mechanical ventilation.
The natural option is a hole in the bottom of the door and the installation of a supply and exhaust pipe.
When installing mechanical ventilation, a pipe is installed in the corner of the room; it is recommended to lead it out through the attic to the roof at a distance of 1.2 meters. If a hole is made in the wall for mechanical drawing, plastic pipes must be additionally connected with a corrugated tin elbow.
A round damper is installed on the upper part, which faces the street, to protect it from snow and rain.
Often in severe frosts due to condensation, the pipe lumen closes, and it is difficult to remove it. To avoid this, it is recommended to direct the outside of the pipe downward. Thanks to this, it will be possible to avoid the formation of ice on the edges of the pipe and in its walls. Pipes need to be insulated with waterproofing material.
Arrangement of ventilation in the chicken coop with your own hands
Before starting work in the hen house to organize air exchange, you need to make the correct calculation, which will be based on the number of birds and the area of the room. The design includes a variant of the ventilation system, the development of a scheme, taking into account the calculation of performance and the required material. When drawing up a project, you need to make the correct dimensions of the area.
To make a mechanical system, you need to prepare:
- saw for wood or metal;
- nails, hammer, boards;
- bolts, rivets, stapler and staples;
- electric drill;
- thick paper;
- ruler, compass;
- metal or plastic pipes of the same size - 2 pieces.
To install exhaust ventilation, you will need one centrifugal fan, two tees for plumbing work, free-flow pipes with a diameter of 110 mm, one valve, transitions with a cross section of 110 and 124 in the amount of two pieces. You will also need to purchase a relay to adjust the on and off.
Installation of ventilation in the chicken coop is as follows:
- It is necessary to make a cut in the logs of the wall, it has a square shape. A ventilation pipe will be inserted into the hole. At least 10 cm must remain from the top edge on the inside to the ceiling. The upper strapping log must not be touched.
- A pipe is inserted into the finished hole and secured with plywood with a square slot.
- To check if the ventilation is working properly, you need to go into the chicken coop in calm weather and close the door tightly behind you. Then attach a sheet of paper to the hole in the pipe. If it does not fall, but is pressed firmly against the pipe, ventilation works well.
- For large rooms, an additional fan must be installed.
To remove accumulated condensation, you need to attach a plug to the bottom of the plastic tee. A metal fitting is screwed into it, on which you need to put on a narrow hose. It is designed to drain and collect moisture accumulated inside the pipe. The end of the hose is lowered into the canister. The accumulated drops will flow down the pipe, accumulate in the tee, and then flow through the hose into a special container.
It is recommended to equip the ventilation system with means for adjusting the air flow. For this, windows, vents are made, dampers are installed.
Features of the organization of a winter chicken coop
It is necessary to calculate the ventilation scheme in the hen house in winter most carefully. Continuous air exchange is essential for bird health. In winter, it is impossible to organize constant natural ventilation, as this can lead to drafts and diseases of chickens. In a closed room, during breathing, the volume of oxygen decreases, it is replaced by carbon dioxide. Because of this, the atmosphere becomes suffocating, damp. It is very difficult for birds to live in such a room. Without ventilation, they start to hurt, they can die.
When installing ventilation pipes in a winter chicken coop, the following features must be taken into account:
- If the house has a gable roof, the standpipe should not extend beyond the level of the ridge. In the case of flat roof chicken coops, the pipe should be lowered from the roof to a distance of up to 40 cm.
- The suction pipe must be placed at least 30 cm from the floor. This takes into account the size of the litter.
- Exhaust and supply pipes must be installed on different sides of the room.
- In the elbow of the chimney from the street, you need to make a small hole of no more than 5 mm to drain the condensate.
The entire exhaust structure must be disassembled at least twice a year in order to clean it of accumulated dirt and dust.
If all the requirements and rules for the installation of ventilation in the chicken coop are observed, it will be possible to preserve the health of the birds and increase the egg production.