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Water Shed Keeps Caattle Waterers From Freezing
"It keeps my cattle waterers from freezing and lets cattle get all they want to drink," says Rick McKnight, Jarvie, Alberta, who built an insulated, wood shed over his automatic waterers.
The building is 8 ft. wide and 12 ft. long. Floor, walls, and ceiling are insulated. There are two 350-gal. galvanized water tanks inside, one at each end of the building. The water level in each tank is con-trolled by a separate float.
He cut two 2 by 2-ft. openings into the wall next to each tank for cattle to reach in and drink. Metal boxes mount inside each window and extend down into the water about 18 in. They keep cold air out of the shed. He also suspended two heat bulbs inside the building - one 250-watt and one 175-watt. An access door is built into one side of the shed.
"Even in the coldest weather, just a skim of ice appears on the water in the openings," says McKnight. "The shed is located at a point where three pens meet. I use one waterer for my 100 cows and the other for replacement heifers and calves. A big ad-vantage is that the cows always have plenty of water available so they don't have to fight for water and risk slipping on ice which could result in aborted calves. An-other advantage is that there's no chance for electric heating elements to come in contact with the water and shock the animals.
"The heat bulbs really help warm up the shed and cost less to operate than propane or natural gas. I made `curtains' over the openings to help keep out cold air by cutting felt into 8-in. wide strips. I may wrap styrofoam around the boxes inside the shed for extra insulation."
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Rick McKnight, Box 171, Jarvie, Alberta, Canada TOG 1HO (ph 403 681-2165).

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1995 - Volume #19, Issue #2