My chickens will be drinking water tomorrow!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by chiknlittle, Jan 16, 2009.

  1. chiknlittle

    chiknlittle In the Brooder

    Jun 12, 2008
    Eastern Panhandle, WV
    I've been dealing with a lot of problems in my flock, so much so that I have ordered all new chicks who are scheduled to arrive Feb 23. I have seven white rocks in the large coop. Two red stars are in a smaller coop. Shaq the golden polish rooster(minus his head and tail feathers) is free ranging and sleeps with the straw bales. Moe the dark cornish hen is in the basement and recovering nicely. Those evil, evil white rocks have had way too much fun as they killed off two of my sweet, gentle red stars and a jumbo cornish X rock female we named Butters. They especially love vent pecking and egg eating. If they think it's cold now they should just wait and see how cold it will be in the deep freezer. I don't want them teaching bad habits to the new chicks, and I can't find anyone to take them. So in the stew pot they go. In the mean time, all of these extra sleeping arrangements mean extra waterers to freeze up. I know I've seen similar heaters made, but I thought I'd share how I made mine. I hope the following helps somebody....

  2. gumpsgirl

    gumpsgirl Crowing

    Mar 25, 2008
    That is fantastic! That is the first time I've seen one like that. What a great idea! [​IMG]

    Thanks for sharing it! [​IMG]

    BTW - Good luck with those white rocks.
  3. chiknlittle

    chiknlittle In the Brooder

    Jun 12, 2008
    Eastern Panhandle, WV
    Thanks! I've done everything I can for those white rocks. I even trimmed their beaks a little (not enough to be permanent) hoping that would help. They're just mean and I don't understand why when I can describe all of the other chickens as clever, funny, sweet and gentle. These white rocks will attack me from behind if I forget and clean out their water bowl after I let them out and if I stand still too long they with jump up and "bite" at my fingers. [​IMG] I give them scratch grains and treats on top of their layer food and oyster shell. They have a heat lamp and plenty of roost space and extra straw to nest in. I don't know what else to do besides set the oven for 350 degrees.... [​IMG]
  4. cmom

    cmom Hilltop Farm

    Nov 18, 2007
    My Coop
    What a great idea!!!
  5. WalkingWolf

    WalkingWolf Songster

    Jan 1, 2009
    North Carolina
    Sorry I don't have any pics, but I stole my wife's angel food cake pan. There is a cone that comes up the middle with a hole that the small light bulb threaded fitting will fit into. Use a 25 watt chandelier bulb and with the pan sitting on a flat surface it is sealed off. Fill cake area with water and it is heated from the center.
  6. chiknlittle

    chiknlittle In the Brooder

    Jun 12, 2008
    Eastern Panhandle, WV
    WalkingWolf that is a great idea! And I know my local thrift store has some of those pans cheap.

    Update: I just spent most of the morning rigging up electrical for these heaters. Until it warms up enough that I can dig a trench and run real electrical, I am forced to run extension cords from my house's outdoor GFCI outlet. This morning I went out and set down fresh water for the chickens and got to work on running the extension cords. The 100 ft cord coming from the house runs off the deck, over a stack of felled trees, through some more trees, under a fence through a 3 way split and to the heater. A 50 ft cord runs from the 3 way split to the other heater. Right now I am using 60 watt candelabra bulbs because of the length of the extension cords. I know that for every 100 ft of cord you will lose about 10% of power so techinically the first heater is running at close to 50 watts and the second heater even less. But it is working! As I was busy running cords all over my back yard the fresh water that I had put out was busy freezing up! As soon as I turned on the heaters the water started thawing back out. So my chickens will be drinking actual water today instead of pecking at the snow and ice. Something else to think about too... I took the time to wrap plastic around the switches and anywhere that there was exposed electrical connections and taped it all in place. Hopefully, keeping these connections dry will help prevent short circuits or fire hazards.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  7. Sylvie

    Sylvie Songster

    Jul 15, 2008
    I made one using a 40 watt chandelier bulb that kept the water unfrozen during our two 10 degrees below zero nights. So the 60 watt bulb in the article is probably overkill for most areas.
  8. chiknlittle

    chiknlittle In the Brooder

    Jun 12, 2008
    Eastern Panhandle, WV
    Probably Sylvie, but what I failed to mention in my post was that while I now live in West Virginia, I am really a military wife who is originally from the Mississippi Gulf Coast. I never even owned a winter coat until we moved here (or chickens) and now I either spend my time looking for the next warm article of clothing I can layer on, running to the store to buy them out of tp, milk and bread (because somebody said that's what you're supposed to do when the snow comes) or making up stuff for the chickens. I'd love to try out some 40 watt bulbs but I'm 30 miles from town and new bulbs will have to wait until I'm out of the required tp, milk, and bread before I brave the roads in the dumb dumb rental car I'm stuck in until my nice SUV with the 4WD gets fixed. Oh Lord, could somebody please save me from myself? [​IMG]
  9. AHappychick

    AHappychick Wanna-be Farmer

    Dec 16, 2008
    Quote:that is incredibly smart!!!
  10. morelcabin

    morelcabin Songster

    Feb 8, 2007
    Ontario Canada
    Quote:It could be worse...they could have sent you to Canada [​IMG]

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