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Need help with their water

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by duckncover, Jun 26, 2010.

  1. duckncover

    duckncover Duck Obsessed

    Jan 17, 2009
    North Eastern PA
    I just can't seem to keep them from kicking wood shavings into their water. It starts to smell and prevents them from drinking. I have to unload the waterer several times a day. I tried putting the waterer on a tray that doesn't have any shavings on it but they still manage to kick it into there. Any ideas? Right now I have a red watering jar lid attached to a jar filled with water. The four chicks are 8-10 days old now...do you think their ready to come out of the 10 gallon fish tank and get moved into a bigger bird cage? The heat lamp would still be there but the temperature may not be as high.
  2. NC29mom

    NC29mom Songster

    Jun 15, 2010
    Scotland Neck, NC
    same problem here! Wish I could help!
  3. blueberrychickens

    blueberrychickens Songster

    May 12, 2010
    Hudson, MA
    Put the waterer up on a couple bricks in the corner of the brooder. Make sure it's level or the water will spill out & soak their bedding. Putting up on bricks has helped me tremendously, I'd say it's cut down the shavings in the water by 90%.
  4. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

    Nov 9, 2007
    SW Arkansas
    Quote:[​IMG] Continue to elevate their waterer (and their food) as they grow. The basin of the waterer should be level with your smallest chicks back. They should have to reach up just a bit to get a drink.
    Chickens don't have the same swallowing mechanism we humans do. You'll notice they tilt their heads back to swallow. Elevating the waterer is actually good for them, as it aids them in swallowing.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2010
  5. Turner

    Turner Songster

    Jan 2, 2010
    Northeast OH
    Raise the waterer....it should be at their back height at least. This will help with the mess. If they are trying to fly around and playing they will still get stuff in the waterer and it will need to be cleaned several times a day. Good Luck!
  6. JMPE

    JMPE Songster

    Aug 1, 2009
    Western Wisconsin
    My chicks were two weeks old when I started them on a nipple waterer. They've had clean water ever since. [​IMG]
  7. azygous

    azygous Free Ranging 8 Years

    Dec 11, 2009
    Colorado Rockies
    Here's what I did. I cut two slots in the cardboard brooder box up near the top and slipped a narrow stick through it. I screwed an eye hook into the underside of the stick and slipped an "s" hook through it. To adapt the chick waterer to being hung, I slipped a net over the bottle (the kind that those tiny oranges come in) and secured it around the base with a string as tight as you can get it. Then slip an "s" hook through the netting at the top of the bottle, fill with water, screw into the base, and hang it. I have it at the height of the chicks' backs, and they can kick and fling the wood shavings all over thunderation and none ever get into the water. When they were very small, they loved to sleep underneath the waterer.

    Here's what it looks like. [​IMG][​IMG]
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2010
  8. SpeckledHills

    SpeckledHills Songster 10 Years

    May 25, 2008
    Below are the best ways I've found to keep water clean for different ages of chickens.

    Baby chicks < 1 week old
    Use one or two plastic peanut butter jar lids with marbles in them. When chicks are this young, have all the shavings covered over with paper towels. Put the water containers in the middle of the floor for easy access by multiple chicks at once since at first they need to drink very frequently and also aren't that great at mobility yet.

    Older chicks
    I spread just 1 or 2 paper towels over the shavings in one corner of the brooder, and put the water container in the very corner, where it is braced close to the wall & less likely to get tipped over. I progress between the following water containers as the chicks get larger:
    1. Empty can that sliced black olives came in.
    2. Empty can that mushrooms came in.
    3. A chick or pigeon waterer (The plastic kind with a red drinking base and white water holder on top) placed on top of an unopened can of mushrooms (to give height and stability).
    4. A chick or pigeon waterer on top of an unopened can of cream of [anything] soup (The can is just the right size to fit in the circle indent on the bottom of the waterer).

    Adult chickens
    The top edge of the water container should be just a bit higher than the chickens' backs. If there is a short chicken in the bunch, I push a pile of sawdust up next to the bowl for standing on, or put a small piece of 2"x4" wood on the floor there. Then I use one of the following:
    A. I put a hard-to-tip bowl on a very short stool or piece of tree stump that doesn't leave room for the chickens to stand on it.
    B. For a holder, I screw the wire top frame from a lampshade onto a stack of blocks and bend the wire circle into "waves" that hold the water container and keep it from tipping. I put a stainless steel bowl in the middle.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2010
  9. myblackf150

    myblackf150 In the Brooder

    Apr 25, 2010
    Evington, VA
    I started using wood pellets in place of the shavings and it really makes things neat. The best thing about them is the way they stay hard and in place until they get wet and then they tend to clump a little like cat litter. They have a much harder time throwing the pellets into their feed than they do with pine shavings. Just my opinion.
  10. rcentner

    rcentner Songster

    Sep 6, 2009
    Le Roy, NY
    Quote:love that idea! will use that in the future! [​IMG]

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