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How big of a space do chickens need for their beaks in a waterer?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by mshirk, Apr 17, 2011.

  1. mshirk

    mshirk In the Brooder

    Mar 28, 2011
    Sammamish WA
    I ask because I have the teeny tiny chick waterer bottom, where I screw on a jar on top. The gap is very small, maybe 1/2" for them to drink out of. At any rate, it works well (chicks are 5 weeks) and fits nicely in my coop, and don't want to move to a larger size bottom if I don't have to (gets more bedding in it, spills more easily, doesn't fit as easily).

    Thing is, I'm not sure how chickens actually drink. Do they sip with the tip of the beak, or get their whole beak in to scoop up the water? As my chicks' beaks become adult size, can they still use the tiny chick waterer bottom?

  2. briteday

    briteday Songster

    Dec 16, 2008
    Northern NV
    You will want the bigger waterer eventually or you will be filling the little quart thing a few times each day. They really can't get their bigger beaks in that little chick waterer and they will knock it over one day to get the water out. If you are concerned about cleanliness I would recommend a rabbit bottle, the type with the tube and ball at the end that can be hung in/on the brooder. They will learn quickly how to push the ball mechanism up to get the water out. Just tap it a few times and let a drop f water hang on the tube. The pet stores have large bottles, quart or larger.

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