Changing to nipple waterers?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Godiva, Sep 6, 2011.

  1. Godiva

    Godiva Songster

    May 17, 2007
    I am thinking of changing to a nipple waterer ... what I was wondering was how easy it is to get the chickens to figure it out? And how well do they work in cold climates in the winter? I have two bantams at the moment who have always had a fount type waterer and was just wondering how quickly they would 'get' the change...
  2. so lucky

    so lucky Songster

    Jan 31, 2011
    SE Missouri
    It wasn't hard to get my girls to "get" the nipple waterer. I changed to that when they were about 6 weeks old. Showed 'em a couple of times and they were fine. Now that they are out in their coop and run, I have the nipple waterer in the coop, and a big old heavy dog bowl outside. They prefer the bowl, but I still see them using the nipple waterer occasionally. I fear the nipple waterer will freeze quickly in cold weather. Doesn't seem like it would take much ice in the little nipple part to make it inoperable. As I don't have electricity to my coop, I haven't decided what I'll do in really cold weather yet. Today, there is a cold north wind blowing. Reminded me of what's ahead. It's always something!![​IMG]
  3. BellevueOmlet

    BellevueOmlet Songster

    Jul 10, 2010
    Switching to nipples makes things a whole lot easier. I always recommend them or the waterer cups. I personally prefer the cups so that the chickens have a small cup of water to drink from instead of having to push at a nipple but either type is a whole lot easier and efficient than any other waterer.
  4. pattyh

    pattyh In the Brooder

    Jun 29, 2011
    Harsens Island
    We just changed to a bucket with 3 nipples on the bottom. They took to it right away. I believe due to their pecking nature. So much better than our old system, a 5 gallon bucket inverted w/ holes drilled into it that sat on a metal oil pan. The pan was always dirty even though we set it on a cinder block. I think during the winter we are going to try to submerse a heat rock (for reptiles) into the bucket. Either that or put a 2 gallon bucket inside our 5 gallon bucket and insulate the 2 gallon bucket with foam. Not sure yet what we are going to do. This is our 1st year with chickens so we're learning.
  5. coalroadcabin

    coalroadcabin In the Brooder

    Feb 5, 2008
    I put up a 2 gallon bucket with 3 nipples yesterday. I was afraid the chickens would have a hard time figuring it out. Well, as I was hanging the bracket for the bucket one of my BO's hopped on the roost and watched every move I made. As soon as I filled the bucket with water she jumped down and pecked the nipple - got her drink and pecked again.About 30 seconds later the other BO came over for a drink - in less than 10 minutes all 7 of the chickens had come over for a drink! I guess they're smarter than I give them credit for.

    I was very glad to get rid of the other waterer.......I was cleaning pooh and shavings out of it at least twice a day!
  6. Dutch552

    Dutch552 Chirping

    Jul 12, 2011
    Hart County, KY
    I plan on switching mine to the nipples this week. I bought a cheap aquarium heater to submerge in the bucket in a couple of months.
  7. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

    Aug 20, 2010
    I have three 8 week old chicks that figured out the nipple waterer on their own. I've yet to see the grown birds drink from it but I'm not concerned. They have other water when they are out of the coop and I'm sure they'll catch on if they haven't already.
  8. nerd0geekboyz

    nerd0geekboyz Chirping

    Mar 15, 2011
  9. zekii

    zekii Songster

    Nov 1, 2010
    New Hampsha
    Started my flock out with a nipple waterer when they were chicks...


    Didn't take long for them to figure it out.
    Now they use this bucket in their coop, but I also provide a hanging regular waterer...they use both.

  10. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

    Aug 20, 2010
    Update on mine. I left the bucket with the nipples in the coop and just let them drink from the same bowls and stuff I have outside the coop during the day. Lo, and behold, when I put them up last night the older girls were drinking from the nipple waterer. That is the only water source inside the coop and I don't let them out till around 8am or so. I guess they watched the young 'uns and figured it out.

    Started my latest batch of babies with the nipple system and at least for now, they don't even know how to drink the normal way yet [​IMG] Best thing EVER for a brooder! YAY no more water mess! They do tend to drip some but it's nothing like the mess of a traditional waterer.
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2011

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