Thursday, May 9, 2013

water and algae

For years we have used the bell drinkers in our poultry pens. And for just as long we have cursed them. Attached to 5 gallon buckets, with thin rubber tubes that the water runs through the drinkers are prone to algae growth and general gunking up. At the busiest time of year...when there are 25 pens on the fields with turkeys, egg layers and broilers, it is inevitable that one or more will stop working. Something will clog the tube, no water runs, and the birds go thirsty. It is also a guarantee that this happens on the hottest days of the year, when we think all is well and it is not. Without water poultry don't live very long.

So constant checking, weekly scrubbing, and the inevitable removal of a bunch of feed when water gets hauled out in a feed bucket, and all the bits of feed float into the tube and *somebody has to blow out the tube to clean it out. Not the nastiest job on the farm, but close.

The watering system is one Homer wants to change. Lots of ideas, now incorporated into one design.
A typical water system, where it fills a basin in the bottom to the point where even with the hole. What is different is that it moves with the pen, does not spill while being moved, and being almost airtight, we expect a dramatic reduction in algae growth.

It goes onto the latest version of the pen: constructed of an amazing strong tarp, it shades and protects the birds from rain, while still allowing plenty of light and air. And protection from those never gonna give up predators.
and when filling the poultry waterer, there is the added bonus of a shower!

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