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New chicken keeper - deep litter plus waterer equals a big mess!

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by viking_chicken, Sep 9, 2010.

  1. viking_chicken

    viking_chicken Hatching

    Sep 9, 2010
    North Valleys, Reno, NV
    I've had my beautiful flock of 14 chickens (near point of lay, probably Leghorns, probably hens) for a whole week now. They are free ranging the back half acre during the day and sleeping in a 10x12 coop at night. Their food and water are in the coop, to encourage them to not wander too far away.

    I got really lucky and bought the whole flock plus feeders, waterers, and two half-bags of feed from a woman who was moving away. The feeders and waterer are the standard feed store kind, with the plastic jars that screw on the base. The feed isn't such a big deal - they should be scratching around in the litter anyway - but the water gets shavings in it and becomes undrinkable. What should I do? Can I hang a jar-type waterer, or maybe put it on a little stand out of the litter?

    Thanks in advance [​IMG]

  2. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Crowing

    Jun 20, 2009
    Orange County, NY
    I put the waterers on a cinder block to keep junk out of them - rather than keep them on the floor
  3. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    I would switch to larger, hanging feeders and waterers. They are plastic--white and red. When they're hanging, you really hardly have any spilling or waste.
  4. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Crowing

    Jun 20, 2009
    Orange County, NY
    My chickens would be swinging those waters to and fro and drenching the coop!!!!!!
  5. turtlebird

    turtlebird Songster

    Dec 11, 2009
    14 chickens? Maybe a 2-3 gallon waterer, oh wait....leghorns....2 gallon waterer. I put my waterers up on a cinder block like jersey girl. As the litter gets deeper, I sometimes lift the waterer with a 2x8 to keep it at the level of their backs. I also use hanging feeders with an icecream lid on the top to keep the ladies from trying to sit on the edge. I also have one LITTLE hanging feeder (3 lb.) with a homemade divider, grit on one side, oyster shell on the other. Works pretty slick.
    Keep reading what other people do, you will find what works best for your situation and pocket book!

    edited to ADD [​IMG]
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2010
  6. joebryant

    joebryant Crowing

    I hang my TSC red/white feeders, but I removed all my TSC red/white waterers and replaced them with large, deep TSC aluminum pans raised on blocks during the summer. During the winter I use electric dog water bowls and a 35-45 degrees thermocube from Home Depot for watering. Filling the pans and bowls with a bucket of water is a lot easier than the red/white waterers.
  7. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    Quote:OOPS! I did not mean hanging waterers! Do they even make those? I can't type today......I just use a plastic dish pan for my waterers and they work great.

    But I still say the hanging feeders are very nice.

  8. rancher hicks

    rancher hicks Crowing

    Feb 28, 2009
    Syracuse, NY
    Just logged in so here goes.

    1. You don't say where you are from, that would help.

    2. If you are in a non freezing area then you can leave the waterer outside near the coop and the feed inside. I do this and the coop is dry and dusty. Not great but not smelly either and much easier to clean. I have the red plastic bottomed gallon kind and hang it in the run or set up on cement blocks.

    3. Now if you live in a freezing area I have a friend who recommends "nipples". She has them pushed into a five gallon bucket with a lid on top. You could of course use them in a non freezing area as well and still have them outside. She also has them pushed into plastic water pitchers. They hold less water and she uses three. I am going to try this this winter. They apparently don't drip if installed right.

    What I did last year, my first, was to tote gallon milk jugs of water and clean replacement waterers to the coop each morning using a small red wagon and bring back the dirty waterers and wash them and repeat each day. However like you it was messy even with a tub underneath the waterer. Yuk! I snowblow from the house to the coop as it's a few yard away. I cover my run with plastic so the birds can go outside on the not so below freezing days. A bale of straw for them to spread around and their feet don't freeze.

    There are plenty of pics on here of the different types of water system you can use or modify for you specific situation. Don't be discouraged once you get your system down you'll enjoy having chickens.

    Stick around and you'll meet some real nice people and learn lots of new stuff and soon you need therapy to get over your addiction to chickens. If your lucky you might meet some big star like Lindsey staying at the same rehab place. (Sorry just some humor).

    Have a nice day
    Rancher Hicks
  9. mamabigbird

    mamabigbird Songster

    Feb 11, 2010
    Vancouver Island, B.C.,
    Yup. Cinder block. I keep my feed and water under my nest boxes so they are protected from stuff falling in from above and a 4x4 in front to sort of keep the feed that does get spilled out from spreading into their poopy shavings. I use an ice cream pail for water. Easy to clean out and refill daily. They hardly ever spill it or slop into it.
  10. trilyn

    trilyn Songster

    Apr 13, 2009
    East Syracuse
    I recommend the nipples-check out my byc page and there are plenty of others on here who have them and love them. In the winter I use a bucket deicer in my 5 gallon bucket that has 3 nipples, we get below freezing here and it worked like a charm all winter!

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