water troubles.. going away and water freezes

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by Jody, Dec 21, 2009.

  1. Jody

    Jody Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 8, 2009
    Epping, NH
    I'm going to be away 4 days, maybe 5 days. I have a plastic 3 gallon poultry waterer and water has been freezing every night.. I would change their water daily.. Before it started freezing the 3gals would last a couple to few days..

    Knowing that I need to leave for the holiday, I picked up a 1qt heated bowl, but now the chickens make a mess and the water bowl is full of shavings every day and every morning there's no more water left.

    If I am not home and this heated bowl is on, are the shavings going to heat up and combust, starting a fire?

    Am I going to come home to 3 dead chickens due to lack of water for 3 or 4 days?

    I don't have any money left right now, so can't pick up a heated base and galvanized bucket.. What can I do? I barely know any of my neighbors and don't think I could solicit outside help.

    I added a second light hoping to increase inside coop temp, but it's always between 30/40 during the day when I go in there.. Have no idea what temp is at night when lights go out.. Will leaving it on for the whole time I'm gone be stressful for the chickens? It's on a timer, but the heated water bowl is on that same timer due to lack of more extension cords.


    Any advice or suggestions?

    Thank you
     
  2. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    All I can think of in a pinch is to cover the waterbowl you have with some chicken wire or something like that so they can't play in it and can just get a drink. [​IMG]

    Will that 1qt even be enough water for that long? how many chickens do you have? They might be trying to stand on it to get a drink, make sure it can't tip over. put it up higher on a big brick or rock or something so when they're scratching around near it, they don't kick shavings into the water.

    If you can get to a feedstore a metal waterer and heated base might be your best bet for that long. Make sure its off the ground (shavings) by putting it up ontop of something, that won't burn.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
  3. Tala

    Tala Flock Mistress

    Have you tried elevating the waterer to keep shavings out?

    Mine is up like this
    [​IMG]
    it gets some dust and an occasional leaf in it, but it sure doesn't get filled up with shavings!
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
  4. dacjohns

    dacjohns People Cracker Upper

    One or two heat lamps directed towards the water since you can't get a galvanized waterer and heater base.
     
  5. Jody

    Jody Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Epping, NH
    Quote:I have three chickens. The bowl sits on a cinder block and so far it does not appear to have been tipped over. As far as buying the heated base and bucket, would cost me $67 I don't have since the holiday, coming travel expenses and bills have exhausted me.

    I wanted the heated base and bucket, but could only buy this bowl that cost $22
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
  6. farmin'chick

    farmin'chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Got an old lamp to recycle and a cookie tin? There are good instructions (easy) on making a cookie tin waterer. Or, you can take 4 cement blocks, lay them in a square to leave a gap in the middle big enough for a trouble light, put a 25 W bulb in the trouble light and set it between the blocks. Lay a cookie sheet on top and set your plastic waterer on top of that. Lay a piece of 2 x 4 over the exposed cord inside the coop/run to keep them from pecking it. We use the trouble light/block system for our outdoor goat water. It gets slushy, but not frozen, and we're talking 15 gallons in the waterer.
     
  7. Jody

    Jody Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 8, 2009
    Epping, NH
    farmin'chick :

    Got an old lamp to recycle and a cookie tin? There are good instructions (easy) on making a cookie tin waterer. Or, you can take 4 cement blocks, lay them in a square to leave a gap in the middle big enough for a trouble light, put a 25 W bulb in the trouble light and set it between the blocks. Lay a cookie sheet on top and set your plastic waterer on top of that. Lay a piece of 2 x 4 over the exposed cord inside the coop/run to keep them from pecking it. We use the trouble light/block system for our outdoor goat water. It gets slushy, but not frozen, and we're talking 15 gallons in the waterer.

    I'm gonna try this. Thank you


    Only question remaining is my timer.. It takes 150ft of extension cord from house to coop and this extension cord is plugged into a timer to give them 14 hours of light.. all 3 lamps and the heated bowl run on this timer since I don't have another cord yet.. 2 regular lamps and one small fluorescent tube. I will take down one of the lamps off the ceiling and use this suggestion... If it freezes during the night when the lights are off, do you think it will thaw it during the day when light comes back on? What if I use , say a 60w bulb?​
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2009
  8. BantyRooster

    BantyRooster Chillin' With My Peeps

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    How long before you have to leave for vacation? I would elevate the heated bowl on a cinder block, fill it with water and put a pizza pan over it, or any thin pan large enough to cover the bowl and still be sturdy enough to hold the water can.

    On top of the pizza pan I would put the 3 gallon waterer. If you have time tonight, try it and see how it works out. It's doesnt take much to keep water unfrozen at those them when the waterer is indoors.

    Hope this might help you. Good luck and enjoy your vacation!

    Mike
     
  9. farmin'chick

    farmin'chick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would recommend a 40 W at the highest, and then make sure you leave a little space between the blocks for it to vent. Like Mike said ^ try it out before you go!
     
  10. BantyRooster

    BantyRooster Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 14, 2009
    Michigan
    Quote:I'm gonna try this. Thank you


    Only question remaining is my timer.. It takes 150ft of extension cord from house to coop and this extension cord is plugged into a timer to give them 14 hours of light.. all 3 lamps and the heated bowl run on this timer since I don't have another cord yet.. 2 regular lamps and one small fluorescent tube. I will take down one of the lamps off the ceiling and use this suggestion... If it freezes during the night when the lights are off, do you think it will thaw it during the day when light comes back on? What if I use , say a 60w bulb?

    You could run your extention cord to a power strip and plug your heated bowl into this. It's better to leave this on 24 hours and keep the water open rather that freeze/thaw. Run the timer off the power strip. This way the heated bowl will run constant and you can still set your lights off the timer.
     

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