How bad is the smell from chicken farms near a property in the hot months?

Asked by Carol Failla, Blairstown, NJ Tue Feb 17, 2009

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Alan May, Agent, Evanston, IL
Tue Feb 17, 2009
I've worked on a chicken farm. And the only thing that smells worse than a chicken farm, is a chicken farm in the summer.
4 votes
Dale Austin, Agent, Indian Trail, NC
Tue Feb 17, 2009
Carol, living in Union County NC for over 50 years, I can assure you that you will be hard to notice any odor from a chicken house. Only if you were to enter inside one would you possibly smell an "ammonia' like smell. The poultry producers in the area have very high cleanliness standards, and the houses are thoroughly cleaned after each load of chickens are raised out. They have to be clean as these birds are hatchery raised and do not have a strong immune system and they can very easily get diseased. Tthat can become very costly for the industry as well as the poultry house owner. Come on down to Union County and let me show you just how clean and fresh the country air is compared to some cities up north. I think you'll love the area just like thousands of people who have moved here in recent years.
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2 votes
STHU Carol, It stinks here! I'm going back to N.Y. City.
Flag Wed Sep 13, 2017
It is such a big problem they even have chicken industry reps like this guy on forums trying to bs people. I live a miles down the road from one and I can still smell it sometimes. The way they raise chickens is disgusting and the guy who says they are "clean" is so full of it, many chickens don't survive and the guy who takes care of them needs to pick up their rotting corpses so they don't infect the rest of them that are in there. Take a tour of a chicken house, personally I'll never eat chicken again.
Flag Thu Aug 24, 2017
Every chicken farm is not so "clean" and every country air is not smelling like "fresh" you say. I live next to a chicken farm and let me tell you that there are 3 blocks with 200 000 chicken in it and when the wind is blowing in the direction of our houses, it smells like hell.
Flag Tue May 16, 2017
Wow this is BS.. I live down the road from a chicken farm and the smells are horrible. They spread their waste on the fields across the street from my house causing me to have burning eyes, horrible headaches, chest pain and it takes weeks to get that smell out and then guess what they start all over again! Not to mention the body parts that the buzzards come hunting for or my poor dogs go over there to find. Thank goodness we have a fenced in area now!! Still nothing stops that horrible smell from getting in your house, clothes and even in your food! Can you tell me this is healthy???
Flag Fri Mar 18, 2016
Michelle Lew…, Renter, Athens, GA
Fri Jun 24, 2016
I relocated to Shelby NC and live in Kingstown right up the hill from a chicken farm, its smells horrible like shrimps left out in the sun for weeks, don't even get me started on the flies, rodents and mites, I can't wait till my lease is up and find somewhere else, while I love my children's school the smell and invasion of invisible bugs that bite like crazy and you can't see them, its a living nightmare, I'm having to buy Thieves household cleaner, thieves oil, cedarwood, tea tree and any essential oils to combat the onslaught , also flowers of sulfur. I don't know how the folks living here does it, I have been here a year and feel like I'm going crazy, while I like Kingstown a charming town, I hate the chicken farm, the smell and everything that goes along with it, last but not least my children who rarely get colds seem to always be sick with headaches and colds.
1 vote
So typical of a Yankee....
Flag Wed Sep 13, 2017
Leroy Jenkin…, Renter, North Royalton, OH
Wed Jan 28, 2015
I made the mistake of not checking Google Earth before I moved into a hasty rental decision. It didn't smell the two times I went to look at the house, but boy did I get the surprise of a lifetime when I showed up ready to unload my U-Haul. Come to find new home is less than 300 feet from the vector path of the exhaust fans of one of four chicken houses.I feel like I'm getting "gassed" by ammonia. Spraying a bottle of windex into a garbage bag and then sticking your head in the bag and huffing MIGHT be a close estimate to what I experience on a daily basis. At night when I turn my flood light on in the back yard, you can see it just raining chicken particles. Then every 6 weeks or so,you get a VERY STRONG stench of dung. When they incinerate the dead chickens, the worst charred chicken smell descend upon the neighborhood.Health problems for everyone in hood..Plug these coordinates into Google Earth: 35.312287°, -79.029434°.
1 vote
Annette Law…, Agent, Palm Harbor, FL
Tue Dec 18, 2012
Carol, if this issue has the potential to become problematic for you, you should seriously consider another location. What is charming today will drive you crazy in five years.
What exactly do you EXPECT when you move into the neighborhood of a chicken farm?
I wise fellow from the far east shared, "When you marry a chicken farmer, you become a chicken farmers wife." It is good to reconcile this BEFORE you make a commitment.

Best of success to you,
Annette Lawrence, Broker/Associate
Remax Realtec Group,
Palm Harbor, FL
0 votes
Spam and when a small farm is getting bigger and the governement does not listen to the people living in the area what do you do ? Sell your house ? Who's gonna buy?
Flag Tue May 16, 2017
What if you are 2 miles from the chicken farm?
Flag Wed Dec 23, 2015
f_borga, Home Buyer, Monroe, NC
Tue Dec 18, 2012
any deodorant spray to eliminate bad odor?
0 votes
kinsey cockm…, Agent, Monroe, NC
Mon Jun 20, 2011
Hi Carol,

The smell from and poultry farm depends on proximity and prevailing winds. If the subect property is located West of the farm, chances are any smells will be minimized. Winds do "swirl" at times, even depends on what is going on at the poultry farm. If the chickens are in the Grow-out stage, the smell will be pretty much contained in the barn, If the barn is in a clean-out stage ( the birds have been emptied from the barns and delivered to the processing plant) then that will be the time that any odor will be "traveling with the wind" During clean-out, all the sawdust on the floor of the barn is scraped out and hauled away. Stuff is sturred-up and therefore the bouquet has a beter chance of being airborn.

Clean outs usually take one to two days.
The question as to what is in the barns needs to be addressed. Chickens are not so bad as far a smells go...turkeys, that is another matter. There are a few Quail barns in Union County. I have been inside a barn with 25,000 adult Quail birds inside, the smell so so slight, you could eat your lunch in there. Not that you would want to, is still a bit dusty inside.
In Union County, do net need to live near a barn to share is the smells of poultry barns. Remember the sawduse collected in the clean-out? Well, it is packed full of nitrogen rich poo, the farmers just loooove to spread that mixture on their crop fields. That smell will last only a day or two, unless a hard rain packs in down, thus reducing the smell factor altogether.If you are considering a particuler property, I would be glad to "map-it-out" for you and help determing a smell-assessment.
I just read Alan May's comment...he has aparently never been near a Turkey Barn....
0 votes
Im looking at a property in north Georgia- 333 Evans Road- right next door to a chicken house. The chicken house is north west of the house I'm considering, about 100 yards.
If you look online, can you please tell me what you think regarding smell.
thanks for any help.
Flag Sun Apr 6, 2014
Alan May, Agent, Evanston, IL
Tue Feb 17, 2009
Dunes, having never worked at a pig farm, I'm going to defer to you...

you may know your pig poop better than I know my chicken-er... ammonia by-product.
0 votes
Under The Bus…, , 80202
Tue Feb 17, 2009
When life throws you lemons, make lemonade:
0 votes
Voices Member, , Benton County, OR
Tue Feb 17, 2009
Not true Alan, I worked on a Chicken farm in Escalon Ca. several summers as a youth in the early 1800's and never noticed the smell, but the pig farm next to it reeked.......
0 votes
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