Monday, December 10, 2018

Comparing Wintertime Water Containers For Fowl

I recently had water run down to the horse barn and boy has it become a game changer!  Instead of hauling hoses from the basement and running them across the yard I have one hose hanging from the barn rafters so that it drains after use and I take that out to fill horse trough.  The water spigot puts me right beside the pig pen and filling their water dish has become a breeze too!  

But... I don't have water (nor electric) to the chickens and so I haul a bucket of water out to them every morning and evening to refresh their frozen water dish.  

Over the years, I've used many different kinds of water dishes and my current favorite is a metal pan that I get at the feed store.  It gets terribly beat up from being picked up and slammed on the ground to get out the ice.  But the ice comes right out and the dish is inexpensive to replace.  

A beat up, but functional, water pan of the type used for chickens, turkeys, and pigs

 I spent years using the traditional plastic chicken waterer in the wintertime.  I would have to haul a bucket of warm water down to thaw the container enough so that I could twist off the top and break out the ice inside.  You can see from the handle the amount of torque that was sometimes used to pull off the top!  Many a time the plastic itself would give way and destroy the container.  

Traditional plastic chicken waterer

Second, to metal water pans, I like to use heavy rubber pans.  They don't get as beat up, but they tend to have these little threads in them that make it more difficult to get out the ice.  Over time, the sides will split after being jumped on and manhandled in the process of getting out the ice chunks. 

Heavy rubber dish

I think everyone has their favorite way of handling their frozen water situation.  

What's yours?