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non plastic feeding and watering options?

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by firefowl, Feb 10, 2015.

  1. firefowl

    firefowl Chirping

    Dec 31, 2013
    Temperate Australia
    I've been using a plastic hanging feeder to feed my 2 bantam chickens which worked great for 2 months. however the powerful australian sun has cooked the plastic on the hanging feeder so much that it's become brittle and started to crack and crumble. also the plastic hanging water also lost some of it's red colour which means that it's seeping into the water. since I'm trying to raise my chickens organically I'm not real thrilled about them ingesting plastic and dyes. so what other options are available for feeding and watering that don't involve plastic?
  2. dheltzel

    dheltzel Crowing

    Nov 30, 2013
    Pottstown, PA
    Don't assume that the red dye is seeping out. It's likely being bleached out by the sunlight. Light, especially UV, is highly reactive chemically.

    Now that I've hopefully made you feel a bit better about the past, I would suggest you move to metal and glass. Stainless steel is ideal, but I think galvanized is much easier to find in feeders, and ok for them. I would avoid galvanized for waterers if you are concerned about leaching, and especially if you ever acidify the water (with vinegar, for ex).

    I don't know what is marketed in Australia, but hopefully my comments can guide you to something safe and durable.
  3. TXchickmum

    TXchickmum Songster 6 Years

    Apr 21, 2012
    North Texas
    There are metal feeders and waterers available, however, I would be concerned that these would become way too hot in your climate. We use plastic waterers/feeders without incident - no brittle issues nor fading (and our summer temps reach 100+ regularly). Perhaps you could shade your feeders/waterers. We always keep ours under shade (actually constructed a small wooden cover for the bantams' food/water in the run). Due to the heat, we keep 5 gallon waterers (even for our bantam hens). This enables us to place a frozen container/block of ice inside the waterer to keep it cool for the birds. Anyway, best of luck on a solution for your chickens!
  4. firefowl

    firefowl Chirping

    Dec 31, 2013
    Temperate Australia
    thanks for your comments. do you know where to buy the galvanised feeders/waterers online? as the shops here pretty much just sell the standard plastic ones. perhaps some shade cloth would do the trick to shade them...

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