Problem with 1 gal waterer

Discussion in 'Managing Your Flock' started by kiaya611, Mar 24, 2007.

  1. kiaya611

    kiaya611 Songster

    Mar 5, 2007
    Lebanon, OR
    I am using a 1 gallon plastic waterer for my young chickens before I move them into their coop outside and it seems no matter what I do, they get the pine shaving litter in the watter in a matter of minutes even though I have raised it onto a platform above the floor. Also, they love to hop on top of it and poo into the water. Here is a pic of the type of waterer I am speaking of (although not the exact one):


    Does anyone have any suggestions on both of these problems? I have though of putting a cone of some sort on top of the waterer to keep them from jumping on top of it, but I can't figure out how I would attach it. I don't know how I can get it any further away from the litter to keep the litter out of the water. I don't know how bad it is for pine shavings to be in the water, but after a while, it gets pretty full. I have even added another waterer to make sure they have water all of the time if I have to go out for a while, but I would prefer a better solution.

    Any ideas? I would appreciate your help [​IMG]
  2. bigzio

    bigzio Crowing

    Jan 20, 2007
    Steven, when I raise the waterer to the height of the birds back,it is only large enough for the waterer to sit on and does not allow the hens to stand on the block I'm using to raise the height.

    If you cut the bottom off a plastic gal jug and slide that on the top of a water, you end up with a pointed top that the birds won't stand or even attempt to sit on. I used a empty fruit drink jug and works great.

  3. 4H kids and mom

    4H kids and mom Cooped Up

    Mar 10, 2007
    Southern Wisconsin
    I am using the same waterer and also had problems with poo and shavings in the water. We'd raised it up some 5-6" off the ground, but that still didnt help. My creative hubby punched a tiny hole in the very top and screwed in a small hook and put a bolt on the inside to keep it from sliding out. Now we hang it from the hook at about 6" off the floor and though it eventually gets some shavings in it (not nearly like before), we manage to keep the poo out because they wont perch on it because it swings and moves and they don't like it. We plan on just raising it up as they grow so they have to stretch a little to get their water. Good excercise! (We also just hung their feeder in the same matter. We waste FAR less feed now, because they can't sit in it and scratch it all out. [​IMG] )
  4. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD

    I agree with putting a gallon juice bottle with the bottom cut out on top. Another thing you might try if you don't have a bottle is that you duct tape a upside funnel on top. As for shavings, yeah, you'll have to raise it to their back levels on something that they can't stand on. Oh, and unless you have a way to seal the water bottle don't drill a hole in the top :p You can only do that on feeders.

    Personally, To eliminate the bedding in water dish problem with chicks, I use thoes 32oz water bottles meant for ferrets and rabbits. They learn quite quick know to peck at the ball and get a drink. Dry litter, easy cleaning, no poo contact, no standing on bottles! You should try it.
  5. CranberryBirds

    CranberryBirds In the Brooder

    Mar 14, 2007

    I have a very similar (exact same?) plastic 1-gallon waterer and the chickens were driving me CRAZY. Not to mention, they once knocked the waterer OFF of the flat base I had it sitting on--HUGE mess. Here is the solution I came up with--stick with me on this because it WORKED!

    First, I made the discovery that the base of the waterer was the EXACT same size as a hanging basket I had. You know, the white, plastic ones that you can get at the greenhouse? Any old one will do. The trick is, these baskets have a tapered shape, so the top is larger than the bottom. I filled the hanging basket to within about 1" of the rim with rocks (for weight) and then put the waterer in/on that. The waterer actually sat down inside the flower basket just a bit (lip of the basket higher than the lip of the waterer). Because the pot is tapered, when the chickens "shovel" the shavings it is harder for them to get in. Having the waterer "down in" the basket helps, too. I just made sure the chickens could still get their beaks in there to drink. This was also a chicken-proof solution to them knocking the waterer off of the thing I had it sitting on (see below).

    My chickens were full grown by the time I tried this, with smaller chicks it would have to be something much lower than a flower pot.

    When they were smaller, I used 2 paving bricks. Again, the bricks were smaller than the base of the waterer, I think that helps. However, as the chicks because chickens, the roughhousing in the coop knocked the waterer off the bricks.

    I agree that a funnel on the top would be a great thing to do. You could even make a "funnel" out of a piece of cardboard and some duct tape. Or should I say, "duck tape"? Sorry, I couldn't resist!
  6. Smoky73

    Smoky73 Lyon Master

    Feb 8, 2007
    I just cover the area under the waterer with something other than woodshavings because any age bird will do this, not just chicks. When I have baby chicks, I keep them in a large dog crate with sand and I cover under each waterer with a roll of rubber shelf liner. With a bigger area, I would take a large piece of plywood and place it over the wood shavings so there is a solid floor around the waterer. I am using these plastic grates under mine right now. I don't know where my husband got them, but they work great!
    Of course I have found sand in a brooder works much better for me. If sand gets int he waterer, it just sinks to the bottom and doesnt keep absorbing all the water from the waterer.
  7. kiaya611

    kiaya611 Songster

    Mar 5, 2007
    Lebanon, OR
    Thank you very much for your help. I have put plastic containers over the top of the waters and that stopped them from getting on top. I also found that 5 gallon buckets are just the right size to put the waterers on. You can cut then to be any height you want. I had seeral laying around, so I decided to try cutting one down and it works great!

    Again, thank you for your help.

    Take care,

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