How to Water Chickens
How to water chickens, importance of clean drinking water, poultry water guidelines, chicken water drinkers-best buys, and watch our featured video.
Importance of Clean Chicken Water
Chickens need a clean, clear, cool source of water at all times. Water should not be green and should not be allowed to spill onto soiled bedding. Water that is dirty, green or has spilled by the water drinker can give your chickens serious health problems and even cause them to die. During winter months you need to prevent their water from freezing. Water drinkers, and systems should be protected from sunlight which will heat up the water and cause it to turn green. Chickens cannot drink frozen water. People with smaller flocks tend to use stand alone standard poultry water drinkers. This is an acceptable method of watering your birds but there are much better ways that can make watering your birds less of a chore. It is a good idea to get a good watering system. You can easily make your own or purchase one already made (most suppliers give you the parts and directions but you still have to assemble them yourself).
Poultry Water Cups With An Automatic Float
Several months ago, I decided to try the new poultry water cups with a built in automatic float and I am completely impressed. The chickens do not have to press anything to get the cup to fill up because the float controls the water level in the cup. I use them on 2 gallon buckets, old waterers which no longer work, 5 gallon buckets, and 50 gallon blue barrels and have had no problems with them so far. I simply wipe them out every few days and check them every day to make sure the chickens have not put litter in them (motherhens will fill them up with feed and bedding and I end up cleaning theirs out a couple times a day). I really like them and will buy many more of them.
Poultry Water Drinker Cup
Poultry water drinking cups are one of the quickest to set up, cheap to buy, and one of the easiest ways to set up a clean water supply for your chickens. I use them and have had no problems with them so far. My birds started drinking from the cups right away. You can attach them to a plastic bucket (with a lid), a plastic barrel (with a lid) or to a pvc water line. Check out great ideas for using Poultry water drinking cups Go to Poultry Water Cup
Poultry Water Drinking Nipples
Poultry water drinking nipples can be used as an affordable way to water chickens.The nipples are cheap and easy to install. My personal experience with them was not so great. My adult chickens wouldn't use them and every so often one of the nipples would stick open and all the water would drain from the bucket, which is not great on a hot day if you are not home, your birds will end up with no water. I have heard great reviews about poultry nipples from other people who have only occasionally had problems with them so maybe I just got a bad batch. You can find out how to install water nipples here: Go to How to Install Water Nipples
Featured Video: Thirsty Chickens Drinking From Water nipples-5 Gallon Bucket
This video shows some cute chickens drinking from water nipples. This system works but you will need some patience to teach your birds to drink from them. Some birds take to them right away, while other's not so fast and need you to show them. I do use this system in one of my coops, however, due to the health dangers of water spillage, I have made a small square frame from 2" by 4"'s with hardware cloth covering only the top. I put a shallow plastic pan underneath the square frame with hardware cloth and any excess water spillage falls into it rather than on the ground or in the coop litter.
Poultry Water Guidelines
References: JeffMaggie (Nov. 22, 2013). Thirsty chickens drinking from water nipples-5 gallon bucket. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mri9hJR-68I