Poultry Waterers: Keeping them clean

How often?

Serratia Marcescens on chicken waterer

This is something that doesn’t HAVE to be done every time you give them water. However, please make sure you are checking them several times a day to make sure there is no debris in them. On VERY hot summer days poultry need lots of water just as you and I do. I even give my spoiled flock ice shavings occasionally. Now, if you SEE that there is pink slime CLEAN IT OUT NOW. This is biofilm a type of BACTERIA.

Types of bacteria

Many different types of bacteria can be in this biofilm such as Ecoli, Salmonella and even bordetella. The pink colored or rusty color is an indicator of a very nasty bacteria called Serratia Marcescens “Pink Slime”. since most bases of waterers are colored it’s not easy to spot this unless it’s on the actual threads or tabs of the top that is in the top. So for the BEST practices you should clean your waterers on a consistent schedule. Especially in the heat of summer where bacteria can grow more quickly.

How to clean the waterers

4 Pack Morning Aura Dish Soap - 1
Morning Aura Dish Soap

You need to clean the waterers with HOT, SOAPY water. I use the 4 pack Morning Aura Dish Soap and Morning Aura Bottle Brush Set . Rinsed well with hot water and then soaked in a bleach solution of 2 teaspoons of bleach to one gallon of water can be used instead. Soak for 2 minutes then allow to air dry.  You need brushes that can get into ALL the little crevices as well. Don’t let any of that sneaky little bacteria hide anywhere.

Morning Aura Bottle Brush Set - 1
Morning Aura Bottle Brush Set

Both of these are from AVON. Yes, I sell both of these BUT before you leave let me tell you why I choose both of these. The Aura dish soap is vegan and cruelty free. Most importantly!

Avon does NOT test on animals.

Avon Current catalogue 2020/07/01 - 2020/07/30 [7] - za-catalogue-24.com

What diseases can be transmitted from water?

Newcastle disease, fowl typhoid, Marek’s disease, coccidiosis, Chronic respiratory disease and infectious bronchitis to just name a few.

Why do chickens/fowl need clean water?

They need water for the proper digestion of food and for their egg production. If they don’t drink enough water they could get dehydrated. Chickens drink A LOT of water.

What other things can happen without water?

Young chicks growth can be stunted without enough water. What? Yes. Stunted growth from not just dehydration but from just not having enough water to drink! When the hens are of egg laying age they can have a major dip in egg laying production or become egg bound. They can even be forced into an early molt before season.

Extra Waters

It’s good to have extra waterers around the chicken yard. This way you don’t have to always clean them ALL in one day. Alternate so you have time in between cleanings. Especially with the bleach soaking solution. You won’t feel so rushed and the waterers will get a good and proper cleaning each time.

ACV Apple Cider Vinegar

You can choose to add ACV to your chicken waterers occasionally. Maybe once a week. Some do it every time but I don’t. Remember to only add it to the water if you have a plastic or rubber container! Vinegar causes metal to corrode, which can be harmful to your birds’ health. I will be doing a blog on ACV in the future but for now do your own research and make your BEST decision for your birds.

Bottom Line

The best thing you can do for your chickens/fowl is to keep their waterers, food source and beddings/nest boxes clean for them. In turn they will work well for you as well. Eggs are a great source of vitamins for you and possibly an income source as well. Keep your chickens happy and they will be a blessing for you and your family.