Water and your Chickens

Water and your Chickens

Of course water is a very critical component for your chicken coop success. It influences birds’ performance and growth. While a shortage of water can have a negative impact on feed conversion; wasted water can also become a breeding ground for harmful pathogens and fungus. Consequently, good water management plays a big role in the health of your birds

Water is one of the most is a critical components of poultry and avian nutrition and must not be overlooked.

A shortage of water for just a few hours can result in reduced egg production and can cause stunted growth in growing birds. It is proven that chickens would normally drink water twice as much as feed therefore clean water should be available at all times.

A good watering system should :

1. Ensure an adequate and clean supply
2. Easy to re-fill if using a manual drinker or use an automatic drinker
4. Be easily Monitored and controlled
5. Be of high quality Polypropylene plastic that does not break down leaking chemicals into the water supply and will last a long time or metal.

Put some thought into the drinkers or drinking system for your coop or farm. Keep the water as clean as possible.  With a raised drinker, much less debris will get into the water.  Our manual waters come with 4 sturdy legs for a stable base and raising the water about 3" above ground level as well as a twist cap on top for quick and easy refilling:

This drinker holds 4 gallons and is a great size for the back yard chicken coop.  Or you can always go larger with the 6.5 gallon tripod drinker in polypropylene or metal:


If you have manual drinkers; BE VIGILANT! Check up on the bird drinkers frequently,  and make sure to have enough drinkers adequately support your flock.  As an example, a 2.5 gallon drinker would support 10 chickens for maybe 2 days.  But of course your birds will be different from the next flock so pay attention and accommodate to meet the needs of your feathery friends!

You could achieve a no worry, pristine  water supply by investing in automatic waterers for your coop or farm. These systems ensure constant supply of water to your birds.  There are a couple of different types of automatic water systems you can consider:  A bell drinker (first picture with the red drinker) or a nipple drinker system in the second and 3rd pic

 As a rule of thumb, one auto-water nipple can support up to 10 birds.

Importance of water in Poultry production.

For Digestion

• Water softens feed and carries it through the digestive tract.
• As a component of blood (90% of blood content), water carries nutrients from the digestive tract to cells and carries away waste products.
• Eliminates body waste- Chickens discharges urine and feces at the same. Water help make it easily for this to be released.

For metabolism

• Water also helps cool the bird through evaporation. (Birds do not have sweat glands, so their heat loss occurs in the air sacs and lungs through rapid respiration.)

Contains Essential nutrients

• Water is by far the single most essential nutrient. A chick is composed of about 80% water. Though this percentage decreases as a bird gets older, the need for water remains.

The quantity requirement of water is estimated at 1.5 – 2 x as much as feed because there are several factors that affect the amount of water a bird needs. Poultry water consumption is dependent on factors including:

• Age

• Food consumption (i.e. reduced food intake may lead to reduced water intake and vice versa)

• Temperature of water

• Water Quality

• Humidity

• Type of drinkers used

• Drinker height

• Water pressure etc.

As i said earlier, rule of thumb : – Poultry consume twice as much water as feed… So don’t underestimate the power of WATER.