Hot weather and lots of rain.
You can imagine how those conditions mix with chicken poop. At the first hot spell, the chicken pen started to stink a little. It’s behind the little cabin, so I didn’t mind much. And then it stayed hot. And it kept raining. And the smell crept around the cabin and into the side yard. And besides, flies and chickens are not a good idea. (Besides, it’s just gross.)
We headed off to Plattsburgh last night. We had a few things to go over there, and I needed to buy some barn lime to solve the stink. (Would have love to have gotten it locally, but none was to be had.) Of course, I went in for lime, but also came out with a new feeder, a fireplace brush, and a bag of crushed oyster shells. Anyhow. Barn lime in “non-hydrated.” That is, this lime is not caustic like the kind used for building and such. It’s essentially crushed limestone. Being non-caustic, it doesn’t burn their little footies. (Or mine.) If you’re shopping for it, make sure it says “non-caustic.” They’re very clear about it.
Being as I recently moved the coop and pen, I had to lime around the old footprint as well. Looks a little bit like there was a talcum powder explosion out back, but it seems to be working, even at first sprinkle. The lime dries up the soil some, makes for an inhospitable atmosphere for flies, and somehow, makes it just plain not stink. You know what’s unappetizing? Going to the coop door to gather eggs, and smelling a stinky pen.
Here’s to less-fragrant pastures!