Having clean water for your chicks is an absolute must. With my original waterer, I was constantly cleaning it and worrying it would dump, and I’d come home from work to find my babies dead. After doing some research into chicken waterers I found a post by the Chicken chick using poultry nipples. I ordered my poultry nipples on BackyardChickens.com from Mr. Peeps, for only $1 each. By the way, just a note for those newbies like me, you have to join Backyard Chickens in order to send Mr. Peeps a message.
I think I mentioned back in my Baby Chicks post that there was a two and a half week window between the first batch of baby chicks and the second. Although they all get along fine, I do not recommend this. Only because it makes providing food and water for them a bit difficult because of the size difference.
Supply List to make Poultry Nipple Waterer:
- 1/2″ slip/threaded coupling (use the gray electrical coupling because these will tighten down completely, the irrigation ones will not)
- 1/2″ coupling Male/Female (use electrical coupling)
- 1″ to 2″ piece of 1/2″ pipe
- 1/2″ coupling slip/thread
- (2) nylon hose barbs 1/2″ x 1/4″ID
- 1/2″ to 3/4″ reducer thread/thread
- 3/4″ coupling slip/thread
- 2′ section of 3/4″ pipe sch 40 (this can be however long you wish, place nipples about 1″ apart along pipe)
- 3/4″ slip cap
- 5′ 1/4 ID tubing (this can be however long you wish, depending how far you want the bucket from your drips)
- Teflon tape
- (2) poultry nipples (more if you are making your pipe longer)
- 3/4″ hole drilling bit
- 11/32″ bit
- small bit just for starter holes
- silicone sealant (optional)
- 5 gallon bucket
- PVC glue
1. Wrap all threaded pieces with teflon tape.
2. Drill starter hole in 3/4″pipe.
3. Drill 11/32″ hole in pipe.
4. Screw in nipples. (I used a wrench to tighten mine down, not sure that is necessary. Also, if desired put a little silicone around hole before screwing nipple in.)
5. Glue 3/4″ cap on one end of pipe.
6. Glue 3/4″ coupling on other end.
7. Screw 1/2″ x 3/4″ reducer into coupling.
8. Screw nylon hose barb into reducer.
9. Drill 3/4″ hole into side of bucket.
10. Screw the 1/2″ Male/Female coupling through the hole.
11. Tighten the 1/2″ slip/thread coupling onto male coupling that is sticking through the bucket.
12. Glue 1″ to 2″ piece of 1/2″ pipe to coupling.
13. Glue opposite end of the above pipe to 1/2″ slip/thread coupling.
14. Screw nylon barb into coupling.
15. Attach one end of 1/4″ tubing to bucket and the other to pipe.
16. Celebrate you’re done!
Since I had two different sizes of chicks I attached 2 pipes to one bucket. It only took them a few hours to start using the new waterer. Then I was able to remove old one. I originally had the pipes connected with strings but had to change that to chain. I have hooks at the top of the cage so as they grow I can shorten the chains. Makes it very easy. Now I’m finally not constantly worrying about their water situation. Next problem, make them a feeder to stop them from standing in their food dish as they are doing in this picture.
This is not a hard project. Not counting the trip to the hardware store, the whole thing took less than 2 hours to complete.