In January I wrote about our attempt at winter-proofing our chicken water. I wanted to follow up after giving it a real-world test to report that it exceeded my expectations. On mornings when the temperature dropped below -10 F we had to thaw the drinking nipples with a rag dipped in a bucket of warm water, but in mild winter weather like this week when the overnight temps are in the high single digits or low teens, it doesn’t need any help. When we had the warm spell in February and early March with nights in the 20s I was able to leave the heater unplugged and just rely on the recirculation and the heat retention in the insulated tote.
The chickens have managed to destroy the insulation and duct tape immediately adjacent to the nipples, so I’m sure this will require some new insulation and wrapping before next winter. But knowing chickens and their propensity to peck, I’m actually surprised they were so gentle on it!