Views: 2023 Author: LONGMU Publish Time: 2023-12-11 Origin: LONGMU
Healthy chicks drink an average of 1.8 grams of water for every gram of feed they eat. If this ratio is too much out of balance, it usually means something is wrong. If the water consumption is much higher, this can be caused by illness, heat stress, or a leak in the system, among other things. But if the chicks look healthy, the feed intake is normal, and there are no visible leaks, this could also mean that there is something wrong with the set-up of your poultry drinking water supply.
In experience, the following three are the most common causes of excessive water wastage:
The size of a broiler determines the height of the drinking line. Situating the drinking line too high or too low will affect water intake. A chicken cannot swallow, so the correct drinking position for a chicken is upright, with a stretched neck so that the water runs down the throat. For the day-old chicks, the nipple drinkers should be at eye level so they can easily spot it. Also, the pressure shouldn't be too high, so they can easily activate the broiler drinker nipples.
It often happens that the height of the drinking line is not adjusted frequently enough. This should be done daily, especially during the first two weeks, because a broiler grows quite quickly. Suppose you do not adjust the height of the line for a week, then the drinking nipple can hang a few centimeters too low. As a result, your poultry birds have to make more effort to drink and waste more water.
If the drinking line is then suddenly increased by a few centimeters, this causes stress for many chickens. It is difficult for them to adapt to the drastically changed height difference. This can even mean that some of them don't want to drink at all anymore. That is why it is best to adjust the height of the drinking line daily in small steps, so it is always situated at the ideal drinking height.
It is important to thoroughly flush and clean the poultry drinking lines regularly to keep harmful bacteria out of the chicken drinking line as much as possible. The temperature of the water is also important. The higher the temperature, the faster bacteria and fungi can multiply.
Biofilm is a slimy layer that forms on the inside of the drinking line. Over time, pieces of this biofilm may break off, ending up in the chicken drinking nipples. This blockage then ensures that the poultry drinker nipples no longer closes entirely and starts to leak.
By regularly flushing and cleaning the drinking lines, you prevent biofilm build-up and maintain the water's temperature.
The water pressure must also be adjusted regularly during the round. As the chicks get older, they drink more. This means that the water flow of the drinking nipples must also be adjusted. If you don't do this, there is a chance that the chicks at the beginning of the drinking line will drink all the available water, and the rear part of the drinking line will run dry.
Be careful not to set the pressure too high. The counter pressure makes it more difficult for the chicks to activate the drinking nipple. In addition, it will release so much water that the birds cannot absorb everything and will waste more. This leads to unnecessary additional water wastage. After adjusting the water pressure, walk around the chicken house to check how the animals drink.
You can easily adjust the water pressure on the drinking line via the pressure regulator at the beginning or middle of the drinking line. Especially with broilers, it is advisable to check the pressure daily and adjust it.
The Suitable Drinking Nipples for Poultry
Drinking nipples for poultry are available in many types and sizes. Selecting the right drinking nipple will prevent water wastage and contributes to the growth and health of your animals. Discover which drinking nipples there are and which drinking nipple type is suitable for your poultry.
In the baseline, there are two different drinking nipple types. The difference between these drinking nipple types is related to how the drinking nipple is activated.
A 180⁰ nipple is activated when the pin is pressed up. So the chicken drinks from this drinking nipple from the bottom side.
A 360⁰ nipple can also be activated through side-action. Therefore, a chicken can drink from both the side and the bottom side when using this drinking nipple.
1) Drinking nipples for broilers
Broilers consist of 70% of water. Therefore, they must start drinking as early as possible and get sufficient water every day for optimum growth. A 360⁰ drinking nipple is, therefore, the best choice for broilers. This nipple type has the least resistance, so the young poultry farming animals can easily activate it.
Young pullets explore their environment by pecking at everything they see, just as young broilers do. A 360⁰ drinking nipple can be activated from each side and ensures pullets quickly learn to drink, so they ingest sufficient water during the crucial starting phase.
Laying hens can drink from both 180⁰ and 360⁰ drinking nipples. But because 360⁰ drinking nipples are increasingly used in the rearing phase, they are also used more and more in hens laying houses. This reduces the transition to the laying house and increases the chance that the laying hens immediately drink sufficient water.
Breeders usually drink at fixed times to prevent waste or over-drinking. Therefore, a 180⁰ drinking nipple is the best option for these animals. Even when the birds fiercely peck at this nipple type, a limited quantity of splash water is released. This positively affects the poultry house's litter quality and therefore contributes to preventing respiratory tract disorders and footpad dermatitis.
The upper beak of an untrimmed laying hen is longer than the lower beak. This means that they cannot approach a drinking nipple from below. Instead, they turn their heads to the side to peck at the nipple with the side of their beak. Then you would need a unique 360⁰ drinking nipple with a low flow side-action, so the untrimmed laying hens can drink more easily, thereby reducing water wastage.
There are a few other choices that are important when selecting a drinking water system. The most important ones are:
Material: Drinking nipples entirely made of stainless steel have the longest service life. But drinking nipples with PVC components are cheaper.
Drip cups: The higher the water flow becomes, the greater the probability that chickens will start to spill water when drinking. From a water flow rate of 50 ml/minute, we recommend using chicken water drip cups. We also recommend using drip cups for untrimmed laying hens because they tend to spill more.
Water delivery: Most drinking nipples are available in several variants, each with its own unique water flow rate. The choice for a specific water flow rate depends, among other things, on the type of animal and the climate conditions in the house. For most chickens, a water flow rate between 35 and 80 ml/min is sufficient. With a higher water flow, there is a higher risk of spillage. It is wiser to install more drinking nipples to ensure that all chicken farming birds get enough water.
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