Things We Do For Our Chickens 1

WATER

In the coop I started with a hanging waterer.  The Ladies and Jack had a party one night and this is what I found in the morning.

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So I changed it to a pedestal waterer.  Which is an 8″ cement block with an electric light bulb inside it to keep their water from freezing.  I wired the coop with a weatherproof switch by the coop door.  If the temperature will fall below freezing I turn it on.  This is working very well.  It was 2 degrees out and 10 degrees inside the coop the other morning, ( 2 degrees F or -16 degrees C. ) and the water did not freeze.  There is one spot where the roosting girls poop on a 2X4 that I scrap off every morning and the poop was as hard as a brick and frozen solid to the 2X4.

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I left the chain hanging over the waterer to discourage roosting on it, that seems to be working.

I also fill a 2 liter bottle with water for the run.

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FOOD.

I made my feeder from the cut off bottom of a 5 gallon plastic pail, a 1 gallon plastic paint can and two different sized funnels. The smaller funnel is inside the gallon paint can to direct  the feed  out the feed holes.  I can hang it in the coop or the run.  At night I put it in the coop and if the weather is dry I hang it in the run during the day.  I know I can buy one, but being a “Fugal Yankee” I like to reuse or recycle as much as I can.  And it is good to use some of the tons of stuff that I have gathered over the years.  My wife says ” throw it out” and I say “but it’s good stuff, I might need it some day”.

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Because I don’t like eating my meals off of a dirty floor I try to hang anything I give the chickens so their food stays a little cleaner.  Well until they drag it through the dirt.  I have a couple of heavy wire hooks on the chain-link of the run, an old dish drying basket also hanging on the out side of the chain-link and a wire hanging down in a corner of the run.

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My wonderful wife has been getting old produce at our local Whole Foods store for the girls so they are getting greens even in the winter.  Heads of lettuce, cabbage and carrots hang nicely.  Loose leaves like kale and swiss chard I stuff into the dish drying basket.  I also will place a peeled banana in the dish basket but they eat the banana so fast I don’t have a picture of it.  They are quick.

Ed

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4 comments
  1. The lightbulb in the cement block is genius! We’re getting a cold snap this weekend – I’m going to try it.

    • I’d like to say it was my idea, but it wasn’t. I copied it from a neighbor who has chickens. It doesn’t add a lot of heat, but it does keep the water from freezing. I was worried about the water dripping onto the bulb so there is a cover to the block that fits into the recess in the bottom of the waterer. This also locks the waterer to the block so the chickens won’t knock it over.
      Ed

  2. Sally Marks said:

    Mike— Please don’t call Ed a Genius….. we don’t want to encourage him!! Let’s just say he had a ‘moment’.
    Plus, as a woman, he was using Chains before— personally I think the chains were upsetting the ladies!

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