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?? for those using chicken nipples

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by MomMommyMamma, Nov 9, 2010.

  1. MomMommyMamma

    MomMommyMamma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 13, 2010
    West Virginia
    We got some chicken nipples and set up a bucket feeder in the coop. We have 3 nipples for 19 chickens. I have 2 in a 3.5 gallon bucket in the coop and 1 in a smaller bucket out in the pen. It's been 2 days and all seemed well. Though today we started to comment that the chickens seemed to be spending a lot of time at the waterer. They seemed thirsty - like they just weren't getting enough water from the nipples. In the afternoon I set out a standard waterer and the chickens rushed it. They drank the 1 quart waterer down 1/2 way in just under 15 min. so I set out a larger waterer too.
    Anyone who uses or has used the nipples have any thoughts? Suggestions? Do you think they are just still getting used to the new system?
     
  2. jmagill

    jmagill Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2009
    Western Wyoming
    They prefer to drink from any open water. Mine could have just drank their fill from the nipples and if they see a puddle they jump right in.
    They will however drink from the nipples if there is no other source of water.
     
  3. PJCluck

    PJCluck Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 17, 2010
    Living Free in NH
    I had a very similar experience, though mine were not hanging around the nipples all that much... I have a 50-gallon drum up high in the coop with a 2-inch pipe and 4 nipples off that, plus another 2-inch pipe going outside into the run with 4 more nipples. The birds would drink at all the nipples throughout the day.

    But for some strange reason, I was sitting there one day wondering if they were really getting enough water. So I put out the old, sloppy 5-gallon aluminum waterer, the kind that supposedly drains from the big middle tank to the circular bowl at the base. Well, the birds rushed (as you said) the waterer and drank deeply for a long time. (In fact, my ee rooster ended up throwing up on the ground.)

    They apparently strongly prefer drinking from an open source.

    But... since mine do not sit there at the nipples and suck constantly, but instead walk all over and return to the nipples now and again, I have to assume they are getting enough water through them when the old-fashioned, sloppy, dirty waterer is not there....

    But I am eager to hear other people's feedback on this too!
     
  4. Neil Grassbaugh

    Neil Grassbaugh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 1, 2008
    Quote:What type of nipples are you using?
    What is the water column height?
    Do the birds have to strech up to reach the nipple?
     
  5. MomMommyMamma

    MomMommyMamma Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 13, 2010
    West Virginia
    Quote:What type of nipples are you using?
    What is the water column height?
    Do the birds have to strech up to reach the nipple?

    I have screw in nipples from avian aqua miser and I bought a couple of push in nipples from eBay. They both seem to allow the same amount of water. I am using a 3.5 gallon bucket for one set - the water column height, I'd have to measure it. I'm going to say it's probably 6+ inches high. The smaller bucket is a 2 qt. bucket meant to go in our bantam coop once it's built. Water column is 5-ish inches tall.
    At the larger bucket, the chickens are reaching up to drink, at the smaller bucket they have to bend/crane a little. The second bucket is set lower mainly for the bantams to be able to reach it. I have a garden stone under both for the bantams to use as a step stool. They (the bantams) stretch up to get water at both buckets. I've also noticed that the chickens - all of them- seem to prefer smaller bucket which is outside. Perhaps it's an issue of location. I have the one bucket in the coop so that it's in there w/ them at night and in the mornings before we let them out.
    Since you asked about their reaching for the nipples - I can see that it would probably be best if they are reaching up a bit rather than bending a bit. I'll have to think of a way to make it work for both sizes of chickens until we finish the coop for the smaller chickens.
     

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