It’s not only our house that needs a spring clean but also the chook house and the chooks as well.
Firstly TB and I creep down to the chook house just after dusk, wearing our protective clothing, disposable gloves and taking a jar of vaseline to put on the chicken’s legs – no this is not some kinky chicken thing. One of our chooks gets very upset at being handled so we like to catch the girls after they have gone to roost for the evening so we can put vaseline on their legs to counteract the effect of leg mites. These nasty little pests – the mites, not the chickens – crawl under the scales of the chickens legs and cause itching and soreness and rather unhappy chooks. The vaseline, or even spray vegetable oil like my hairdresser uses on her girls, smothers the mites and makes the chooks feel much better.
Unfortunately the mites like to hide in cracks in wood so we also need to give the hen house and perches a good cleaning. When TB built the Palais des Poules he made sure that it literally could be pulled apart. This comes in very useful when spring cleaning is on the go.
I pull the nest boxes right out and then clean the litter off the floor before pulling the floor out so I can climb inside the house to wash the walls down. I use lots of hot water and my favourite natural disinfectant eucalyptus oil on all the wooden surfaces. I to do a major scrub down of the hen house several times of the year to try and keep the mites at bay.
As you can see it looks very shiny now – just give it a few days and the girls will be using the back wall for target practice again!