by Jennifer Sartell
Photos by author
The other day I was at the grocery store. I hate grocery shop, so I constantly make a list so I can get what I need and get out of there ampere fast as possible. sometimes I feel like grocery shop is like bumper boats with shopping carts, only you have to be polite and not ram the other people. And as I write this, I realize I am turning into my father, hour angle !
In this denounce venture, vinegar, had once again made it ’ s manner to the list. As I made my way down the “ salad dressing ” aisle, it occurred to me that we buy an absurd measure of vinegar. I mean we use it for everything ; framework softener, washing windows, spraying down the shower, cleaning the coffee bean batch, killing weeds, removing soap scum, pickle, cooking…and the list goes on .
recently, the need for an abundance of vinegar stems chiefly from canning season, but besides from my current mission to eliminate chemical scavenge products from our home. I ’ ve been looking up a draw of recipes for homemade alternatives and nine times out of ten, any given ingredient list starts with vinegar. So how is it that one magic trick potion will do everything from kill undesirable weeds, to a breeding a healthy respiratory system ?
According to The Vinegar Institute, vinegar, as described in the dictionary is “ a sourness liquid obtained by acetic zymosis of diluted alcoholic liquids. ” …Oh yea, that ’ s what I thought too…heh.
Reading: 11 Uses for Vinegar Around the Coop
After reading a bite more I found that in short, vinegar is the consequence of two agitation processes. The beginning is zymosis to alcohol, then the second is from alcohol to acid. The type of vinegar, be it white distilled, red wine, malt, balsamic, apple cider, etc. is determined by what is fermented .
Apple cider vinegar in detail has been praised for its health benefits. I remember my grandma drinking it diluted when she had a respiratory infection. She used to say “ it cuts the cold ” and she claimed that it cleared the sinuses. I remember there was constantly a bottle of Braggs in her pantry .
Because we buy indeed much vinegar I started to wonder if making vinegar was a unmanageable summons. Turns out, it ’ s not ! For those of you who are matter to, there are some big articles in Mother Earth News that break down some of the steps to making your own vinegar. I am making a eminence to divulge into these foster. here ’ s a few to get you started.
Make RAW Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) WITH the Mother for Pennies a Gallon! by Kathy Shea Mormino
How to Make Homemade Vinegar
Apple Vinegar from Peels and Cores by Winifred Bird
Whether you buy it at the memory or make it yourself, there ’ s no doubt that vinegar is the chicken keepers best supporter. hera are 13 ways I use vinegar to make my life with chickens even better !
1. Adding Vinegar to The Chicken’s Water
Like Grandma ’ s cold rectify, vinegar is healthy for chicken ’ s respiratory systems as well. It thins emotionlessness and has antibiotic properties. The highly acetic atmosphere that vinegar lends, makes an uncomfortable environment for bacteria. It besides helps create a goodly digestive system, boosts immunity, and helps fight dehydration during hot spells. I add a couple tablespoons to our waterers every few days. A notice of caution : Do not use vinegar in metal containers, it breaks down the metal and can leach chemicals into the drink urine .
2. Cleaning Eggs
Want your eggs to look purdy ? Give them a 10 second dip in warm vinegar. It very brings out the tinge in an testis carapace. It besides helps remove stains and loosens soil and dirt. ( For more on washing eggs with vinegar, read my Iron Oak Farm post How To Wash Eggs… Again. )
3. Conditioning Rinse for Bath Time
As I describe in my post Chicken Bath 101, giving chickens a dainty bubble bathroom every so much is a healthy exercise. Adding some vinegar to the gargle urine cuts soap residue, conditions the skins and feathers and discourages tease infestations .
4. Removing Mineral Build Up on Waterers
We have well water with plenty of rust and calcium. These minerals cause rings on the wimp ’ second water system dishes. As the water system evaporates the mineral scum coats the dishes and dries like gem. The rocky porous surface of the crusty mineral is a capital locate for bacteria to settle. To remove it, I merely add a little white vinegar to the dishes, swish it about, and let it set for a few minutes. After, the dish will easily wipe clean with soap and body of water.
Read more: Mercury Guide
5. De-buggin the Nesting Boxes and Coop
After we clean our chicken coop, I like to spray the nest boxes and cage walls, surfaces etc. with ashen vinegar. It discourages mites, louse and other creepy crawlies. It besides helps deodorize and disinfect. It will dissolves dry egg egg yolk in the case that person broke open an egg in the box, and it has mild bleaching properties .
6. Foot Soak
Vinegar helps soften dead skin around the feet. It will besides discourage fungus under toenails and clean small cuts caused by scratching in uncut terrain. A dilute concoction of vinegar and warm water can be applied as a compress for about 3 minutes or you can stand the wimp in a shallow tub. then scrub your wimp ’ s feet with a stiff abound brush, wash and apply a light coat of Vaseline to sooth and prevent bugs .
7. Loosens Grime from Difficult Areas.
Vinegar besides helps to clean unmanageable areas like intricate argue or cages, perches, or cracks and crevasses that may be soiled. It besides helps clean the rims of waterers. It ’ s a commodity idea to spray down any cages that have held quarantine birds, or if you use a reclaimable incubator box, wipe it down with vinegar to disinfect after the chicks go outside .
8. Conditioning Spray
There are many domestic fowl sprays and dusts out there meant to combat mites, bird louse and other nasties. These sprays can contain some pretty harsh chemicals. If you have a major infestation, you might be forced to consider those. But my philosophy is to use an snow leopard of prevention. A bi-weekly regimen of diluted vinegar sprayed near the vent, the branch, and under the wings, alternating with diatomaceous earth dustings has helped to control mites and bugs with our flock .
9. Cleaning the Incubator
After the chicks have hatched many times the incubator is left a malodorous, muggy mess. Vinegar cuts hatching odors, disinfectants and prevents cast and mildew. I besides use rubbing alcohol near the drive on a cotton swab because it evaporates quickly. ( For more on caring for incubators check out my 4 part Incubation Series )
10. Easter Egg Dye
I know Easter is far from anyone ’ s mind right now but like testis dyes, I ’ ve started dying our wool from our Angora capricorn and vinegar is the source of acidic that sets the dye in the fiber. As I was writing this, dye and vinegar are fresh in my judgment ( and nose for that matter ), so I couldn ’ t leave out this colorful spring time use. ( For beautiful examples of naturally dyed Easter Eggs read Jennifer Burke ’ s post A Very Colorful Celebration.)
11. Pickled Eggs
One of my favorite and delicious ways to use vinegar is in Pickled Eggs ! These tangy, fresh gems are delicious with beets ! And if you can them, its a great way to preserve an abundance of eggs.
Read more: 8 Drinks That Can Cause Abortion
Do you use vinegar around your cage ? share it with the Community and let us know how you use this versatile ingredient by leaving a comment below, on the Community Chicken ’ s Facebook page, or visit us at Iron Oak Farm.
I am not a veterinarian. I merely write about what we do with our birds. Please use your own judgment when caring for your birds.