Chickens not drinking.....

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by katkan16, Dec 13, 2010.

  1. katkan16

    katkan16 New Egg

    Dec 13, 2010
    Portland, OR
    Hi we have two laying hens, a wyandotte and a leghorn, and usually they go through our approx. gallon size water container in about 3-4 days. This is their first winter with us and in the last few cold weeks their water consumption has gone way down. Now they're going through the same container in about 10 days. Is this normal?
    I've tried subbing some moisture in their diet by feeding them yogurt but I'm not sure if that's doing any good.
    Probably because of this neither one of them has laid an egg in a few weeks, though we do have a heat lamp/light on 24/7 to keep them warm and promote laying.
    Is there anything we can do about the water or egg laying situation? This is our first winter with chickens so any suggestions would help!
  2. bills

    bills Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 4, 2008
    vancouver island
    As long as the water is fresh, clean, and readily available they will drink what they require. The fact they stopped laying may have reduced their needs. I would change it out a little more often. Ten day old water can't be that appetizing..[​IMG]
  3. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Most people change the water every day or two.
  4. Tdub4chiks

    Tdub4chiks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 8, 2010
    Constantia, NY
    I don't think they should have a light on 24/7. They need the dark to sleep. It's best to use the red infared lamps for heat.
  5. PunkinPeep

    PunkinPeep Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 31, 2009
    SouthEast Texas
    All of my animals, chicken, rabbits, dogs, drink noticeably less water when the weather is cooler. And my chickens are still laying lots of eggs.
  6. jmagill

    jmagill Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 9, 2009
    Western Wyoming
    Try warmer water. 50-70 degrees. Mine started drinking more when they had warmer water.
  7. mulewagon

    mulewagon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 13, 2010
    Mine ignored their nice warm water this morning, and ate the ice I'd just knocked out of the bowl...dopey birds!
  8. teach1rusl

    teach1rusl Love My Chickens

    They will drink when needed. I do agree that if you're using a white light 24/7, it may be messing with their systems. So if you aren't already doing so, you may want to use a red bulb (they sell red bulbs that aren't heat bulbs), or use your white light on a timer so that they have darkness available at night. Sometimes, even with a light, this time of year is just not good for laying. Did they molt? Even a mini molt can throw them off. Folks who have a lot of birds still have a good chance of getting a decent amount of eggs through the winter. But with only two girls, it's possible that it'll be February before your egg situation looks better... [​IMG]
  9. kla37

    kla37 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 18, 2010
    Hillsborough, NC USA
    Quote:That is so funny! 3 of mine did the exact same thing yesterday afternoon! I think they really want a slushie....
  10. LynneP

    LynneP Chillin' With My Peeps

    They'll drink less in winter but be sure to change it often. Maybe a smaller waterer for winter would suit better?

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