Missouri is similar to much of the country in the fact that we are into our third year of summer heat and drought. In fact, the drought now covers around 60 percent of the continental United States, the largest area since the epic droughts of the 1930s and 1950s. Scorched fields have forced many farmers to plow under crops rather than attempt to harvest anything. As a result of the loss of crops, feed prices will rise and an aftereffect will be an increase in the cost of groceries including eggs and poultry.
Even though I’m confident that my flock is well nourished and hydrated, I’m always open to new ideas and I wanted to try out some of the other products available. The Chicken Fountain is a new poultry watering system designed by Frank Cardaropoli. The fountain utilizes a “semi-sealed, passive flow” design which means that the unit is not under any pressure. Water flows to the drip heads only when your chicken demands water. My first impression of the product was positive: it’s constructed of a high quality PVC material, it’s rust proof and appears well designed and crafted. Other than attaching the side arms to the main unit, the product arrived fully assembled. I connected the system to a garden hose, turned the water on and the set-up was complete!
I know that there are many chicken keepers that are skeptical about this method of providing water to chickens and I have to admit I was a little reluctant myself, but I’m sold–it’s a great product.
In a nutshell, here’s what I liked about the product:
- It’s simple to assemble and install.
- It provides a constant supply of cool, clean water. Refilling the waterer is a thing of the past!
- The chickens easily adapted to this method of drinking.
- The design prevents the water from becoming contaminated by dirt or bird droppings.
- Poultry nipples have been around for more than 25 years and have been proven by research, trail and expert opinion to be a safe effective option of providing water. Supplements, wormers, vitamins and apple cider vinegar can also be added to the unit.
- During the winter, a heater option is available which can be easily added to the unit to prevent the water and drippers from freezing.
For more info on this product please visit this website: The Chicken Fountain
Stay turned: next week I’ll share my attempt at a DIY chicken waterer! To see what else is happening at our southwest Missouri property, visit the garden-roof coop.