We have nine different coops on our property, and that means a lot of chickens and other poultry that need water. Every morning before letting the birds out of their coops, I would check their waterers. Most days, they needed to be cleaned and refilled.
Problems with my current waterers ranged from poor design, to leaks, to their weight when filled with water—not to mention needing to be cleaned constantly. When the chickens were not throwing dirt and shavings in them, they were sitting on top of them doing you-know-what—yuck!
So when I was asked to do a review on The Chicken Fountain, my interest was piqued because we live in Central Florida where it can get quite warm. Since the system is fed by a regular garden hose, my main concern was if the water would be cool enough for the chickens to drink. The water can be very hot after sitting in the hose all day—would The Chicken Fountain help keep it cool?
We decided to try out The Chicken Fountain in our largest coop that has a covered run and houses 18 Easter Eggers. When we received the box from UPS, we opened it to check out all of the components: the main body of the fountain, the feeder arms with the red drippers, the red inspection cap, the hangers and wire stabilizer, a flexible braided stainless steel water supply line, PVC cement, and the instructions. I was surprised that the fountain had some weight to it and didn’t feel flimsy.
After we read the instructions, it was time to assemble. We glued the arms on to the main body of The Chicken Fountain without any problems. And while we were waiting the 30 minutes indicated by the instructions for the glue to set up, we decided where to install it within the coop.
Once we found just the right spot, we mounted a two-by-four horizontally between the studs in the run. Then we mounted The Chicken Fountain to the two-by-four and attached the braided stainless steel water supply line and the mounting brackets to the fountain and determined the optimal height based on our tallest bird: Patrick, our rooster. There were two small cement slabs there where a five-gallon waterer had been, so I left those for the smaller birds to stand on when accessing the water.
Next, we were ready to nail the brackets to the two-by-four and install the wire stabilizer and the red inspection cap. With the water to the garden hose turned off, we attached it to the water supply line. The entire time, our chickens were watching and wondering what we were up to.
At this point, I began thinking about how long it would take the chickens to drink from The Chicken Fountain—if at all—since they have never seen anything like it. However, specially-knotted rubber bands are included with the system to hold the drippers open to allow the water to drip freely if needed, along with other tips on training your flock to use The Chicken Fountain.
We decided to run the main garden hose out to the coop with a splitter on the end so we could attach two hoses next to it. The splitter also has knobs to switch the water to just one side or the other when needed. We bought a short six-foot hose that went from the hose splitter straight to The Chicken Fountain’s braided stainless-steel water supply line. On the other side, we attached another full-length garden hose for watering the horses or whatever else was needed.
Now it was time to turn the water on. As my husband went back to turn on the hose, I waited to see what would happen. He let me know when it was on, so I turned my attention to the drippers. I then touched them with my fingers, allowing the water to come out. Everything was working as planned, but how would the chickens react?
Fortunately, it took the them less than five minutes to figure it out—it was an unqualified success. The chickens all looked like they were enjoying it—I think they were even playing with it. The Chicken Fountain seems to keep them busy and is very entertaining for the chickens drink from, too.
I did leave the old five-gallon waterer in the run for awhile, but after a couple hours, I knew it wouldn’t be needed.
Now, it was time for the final test: Would the water stay cool? It was getting hot in Florida, and on a couple of those hot days, I opened the red inspection cap and stuck my hand in it to feel the water. It was cool, and I was happy.
We are so satisfied with the system that we plan on installing more in our other runs. This will make my morning chores go so much quicker without having to clean and fill all of those dirty waterers.
Another nice thing is that The Chicken Fountain holds approximately one-gallon of water inside—you can open the inspection cap and add various supplements, wormer, or even apple cider vinegar to your flocks’ water to keep them healthy. Another definite plus.
In addition to The Chicken Fountain, the company makes Brooder Bottle Caps. This is a cool little drinker installed on a cap that will fit on a clean, empty two-liter soda bottle. You hang it upside down in your brooder and watch the chicks drink just like the adult birds do. No more shavings and poop in your chicks’ water, either.
If you’d like to make your life a little easier and help keep your chickens healthy, check out The Chicken Fountain.
The Chicken Fountain Standard Model
Brooder Bottle Cap Set (Set includes two Brooder Bottle Caps)
THE CHICKEN FOUNTAIN
Written by Lisa Pedro, aka Christmas Chick
Published : 08/01/2014 - 2:34pm