Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Chicken Nipples

I know what you are thinking. "Chickens don't have nipples." Not that kind!

Nipples over Red
This is a Chicken Nipple:

My clever Reds and Oreo like water. They poo in it every chance they get. But I am in possession of opposable thumbs and a larger brain, so I set out to eliminate their water pollution situation.

I tried hanging a rabbit waterer in the run. They first used this as little chicks in the fancy brooder cage. Given the chance to peck something semi-new, they pecked at it, got a drop of water, and despite their chickeny astonishment, pecked at it again.

Thus encouraged, I ordered the aforementioned Nipple Waterer kit. I also ordered an 11/32" drill bit to install it. They are supposed to be hard to find, but I found one easily enough: 

It was easy to drill the holes in the bottom of a plastic bucket and suspend the bucket where the chickens could imbibe. The harder part was getting them to drink.

Half of the Reds were smart enough to drink from the nipples.
Smart Reds drink without soiling their water
Oreo fell in with the non-smart Reds. In a later experiment she demonstrated a willingness to die of thirst before she would consider drinking from the water source every other chicken was using.
Dumb looks are free
The rest of the flock preferred to drink the poo tea they made every morning from the fresh water I provided.
They say the fittest shall survive. Yet the unfit may live.
OK, so I got outsmarted by poo-pullets. But at least the flock gets clean water when they have absolutely no other choice.


  1. That's really funny! My girls refuse to drink out of one of those dog igloo waterers but drink out of open bowl. No idea the difference. Grrr!

  2. I water my standard sized chickens out of 2 gallon flat-sided goat buckets. They've all figured it out, and the water stays much cleaner than any other chicken waterer I've used.