Chicks and rubber feed pan waterers


Apr 15, 2020
SE Virginia
Our broody is in the process of hatching out chicks and it occurs to me that our flock uses the TS rubber feed pans set up on concrete blocks for water. We will of course have a chick waterer on the ground for the babies, but do we need to worry about the chicks jumping in and drowning? Should we put a brick or something in the middle of the pan? We have 3, so we can also put less water in each. They never come close to draining the water even on the hottest days. How long would we need to worry about the babies? This is our first broody, so all our previous chicks were 6 weeks old before they used the feed pans for water.
Any chicken, any age, any time are capable of drowning if they fall into a pan of water. But chicks are especially vulnerable. To make any pan of water safe for chicks, you need to place enough rocks or gravel into the pan so as to enable any chick who happens to get in it to survive by simply standing on the rocks or gravel so the water only barely covers there itty bitty feet. The idea is that beaks will access the water in the spaces between the rocks.

I would say by the time chicks are three weeks old, they will "have a clue" as to not drowning themselves. But don't take that to the bank. Chicks are notoriously suicidal.

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