is rusty water bad for chickens? not laying very well.

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by butch, Feb 3, 2010.

  1. butch

    butch Out Of The Brooder

    Nov 3, 2009
    Van Wert
    the past couple months the water hasn't been clear, I think it might be rusty water or somthing. is this why they haven't been laying well? this week I got 7 eggs a day from 45 RIR that are almost three years old, and to day only three eggs from them. I'm loseing lots of money feeding them and nothing is coming out of them. what should I do?
  2. TrystInn

    TrystInn Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 16, 2009
    Southern Arizona
    Three years is typically seen as being past laying prime, it may well be that your ladies are going off their best laying years but the rusty water likely isn't helping matters. Can you offer them cleaner water for a week or so to see if laying improves?
  3. LauraSBale

    LauraSBale Chillin' With My Peeps

    is it well water? we have well water and its very hard and rusty, i put Apple cider Vinegar with mother in it, that seems to help or i give them water from the house that has the soften on it, the well water with a lot of Iron in it will have a off taste and if they dont like the taste they wont drink as well and that could be the problem,
    or give them water that is from the water softener,
  4. Sissy

    Sissy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 18, 2007
    Sevier county, Tn.
    I have heard of shocking a well that may clear
    it up. you can do it your self.
    with clorax. no more then 4 tablespoons..
    call a well co. for more info after a day or two
    the water runs clear with out odor
    add the AVC into it the flocks you
    are doing.
  5. LauraSBale

    LauraSBale Chillin' With My Peeps

    When i do my Well, i use Pool Shock the one that kills Bactria and algae, i get the liquid, but a friend of ares uses the powder, i use 1/2 gallon, in the well, then come in and turn on all the cold faucets, until i smell the chorine, then i shut them off, and let set for 3 to 4 hours, then run all the faucets until dont smell the chlorine any more, i do this every spring, if you have a water softener, you want to hit the by pass so the chlorine doesn't get in to your softener.
  6. Bullwinkle

    Bullwinkle Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 30, 2008
    Hi Butch:

    I would say that unless you are giving your hens extra light in the evenings, its normal for them to significantly decrease their egg production. Being older, your hens will of course produce less eggs than younger hens, but they will pick up production soon as the days lengthen. Mine are already starting to produce more. I chose not to give mine extra light since it was so cold and snowy here and I thought I'd just let the girls rest their little bodies instead of pushing them to produce.
  7. Chris09

    Chris09 Circle (M) Ranch

    Jun 1, 2009
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2010
  8. Mac in Wisco

    Mac in Wisco Antagonist

    May 25, 2007
    SW Wisconsin
    I doubt the iron has anything to do with. Our water is loaded with iron and our commercial flock has no problems with it. In fact the previous owner had let the well go for years and it was absolutely foul with iron and sulfur bacteria when we moved in. He kept commercial flocks here for five years and had no problems either.

    When we moved in the water was so foul with sulfur bacteria that if you even cracked a faucet it stunk up the entire house. I shocked the well three times in a six week period to clean it up. It has been pretty good for the past six months now, although it is starting to develop a slight musty odor.

    Follow those instructions for shocking the well. Household bleach works fine. Don't put granulated chlorine in your well. It is very cold at the bottom of the well and the granules may not dissolve for years. I'm not sure why they say to only run the cold water faucets. For the best results you need to do the entire system, every water line, every tap. Also, the bacterial growth in the hot water lines is even greater than in the cold lines. I drain the water heater before running the chlorinated water back into the house and then let the chlorinated water fill the water heater and run the chlorinated water out to all of the hot water faucets too. After letting everything set overnight I purge the chlorine from the well by running the hose out into a ditch for an hour or so, drain the water heater again, refill the water heater, and then run every tap until the chlorine is gone.
  9. prairiepearls

    prairiepearls Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 2, 2010
    Wichita, Kansas
    You should probably find out for sure what the off-color is from. If it's rust, that means the water is high in iron, which is probably OK unless it's REALLY high. LOL - I don't know what a chicken's minimum RDA for iron is! [​IMG] But if the off-color is something else, it could certainly be something unhealthy for the chickens. And that's where my knowledge ends. [​IMG] Good luck!
  10. gsim

    gsim Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 18, 2009
    East Tennessee
    If I recall correctly, your chooks at 3 years should be still producing at around 60% -70% of what they did when they were in their first year. This is something I will have to deal with in a few years myself, and since so many are like pets now, I am at a loss for an acceptable solution. If the water doesn't do it, try Calf-Manna or Hog Feed supplements to boost protein intake. Also always give them as much raw live greens as possible at all times of the year. I even supplement mine with weeds that I know they really like as well as kitchen scraps, cabbage, banana, fruit scraps, etc. Bigger the flock, the harder it is to do.

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