Winter water

Discussion in 'Feeding & Watering Your Flock' started by vigorle, Nov 1, 2015.

  1. vigorle

    vigorle In the Brooder

    Apr 30, 2015
    Question for you all. I live in central Illinois, so we have some really cold winters, but randomly warm days as well. Trying to figure out my water. Right now I have a plastic bucket system with four of those metal nipples on the bottom. Would it work to use this with a heater dropped in that is temp controlled? Will the bucket end up cracking? Will the nipples freeze and not work properly even though heated? Also, my water and food is outside, and not in our coop. On the coldest of days, do you put yours in the coop or continue leaving it as is? TIA! This is my first winter with my chickies[​IMG]
    Edited to add more info:
    Our water bucket hangs and is impossible to knock over, and the way our run is set up the cord would be impossible for them to bite because it comes in from the top and isn't really exposed to them or snow. There is a lid that snaps on the top. There wound be like a 2 inch part exposed as it comes in from the top and enters the bucket, but that can be problem solved. The heater I'm looking at is a drop in, much like a fish tank heater.
    Does anyone have any experience with nipples freezing...because I like my hanging bucket system as it is impossible for them to knock it over.
  2. MysteriaSdrassa

    MysteriaSdrassa Chirping

    May 26, 2015
    Central Wisconsin
    I live in central WI and during the winter I switch to a flat pans made from those blue plastic 55 gallon barrels cut off at about 4-5 inches. Like you my birds range outside during the day throughout the entire winter and keeping nipples or other watering systems from freezing is near impossible here. You may have better luck down there with the temps being "slightly" warmer. With the pans you can just pop out the ice cake when it freezes, which it will on a daily basis up here. And fill it with fresh water the next day.
  3. barbara15

    barbara15 Hatching

    Jul 6, 2015
    Jackson WI
  4. barbara15

    barbara15 Hatching

    Jul 6, 2015
    Jackson WI
    Im still figuring this out. I put a 5 gl bucket with the nipples when the girls where young12wk ish but they never seemed to figure it out so I took it out, how hi do I hang it and should I try again, now they are laying so they are older but I dont know if it was too hi, or low or I dont have very smart girls.
  5. wamtazlady

    wamtazlady Songster

    Jul 18, 2013
    Kalispell MT
    I used verticle nipples in the warmer weather. I brought the pullets home one night. By 7 am the next morning they were using the nipples. You do have to make sure the nipples are the only source of water.

    I read somewhere that the vertical nipples could freeze up if it gets very cold. So for winter I bought a 10 gallon clear plastic tote with lid from Walmart. I put horizontal nipples on the front near the bottom. I bought a stock tank heater that can be used with plastic. I'm not there to make sure the girls use the new watering system as we're snowbirds and have headed south. However, if they figured out the vertical nipples so fast I have little doubt they'll figure out the horizontal ones. I had to have a large water container as the house sitter has at least 2 days a week when he leaves for work early and doesn't get home until midnight or so. I had to make sure they have at least a couple days of water in case he can't check on them due to work.

    If for some reason this system freezes I bought an electric dog bowl that holds 5 quarts of water as a back up.
    1 person likes this.

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