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Livestock Watering Systems - Basics for Cattle

Criteria for selection of the adequate water trough

• Is the water trough suitable for the animal type and for the age of the animal? ①
• Is the water amount per minute, the water volume and the number of drinking positions consistent with the needs of the animal or animal group? ②
• Is the water trough suitable for the type of penning (single or group)?
• Is the water trough heatable which means suitable for installation in cold or open housing?

Criteria for correct installation

• The heigtht of the water trough has to be adjusted to the size of the animal ③
• As far as possible away from the feeding site to eliminate the feed getting wet and the troughs getting soiled with the feed ④
• Choose installation site for group penning so that drinking animals do not obstruct other animals ④
• Installation of the troughs needs to be secure from damages (by kicks, or crowding) ⑤
• Install water and electrical lines secure against browsing damages
• Locate so that soiling with excrements is not possible ⑥
① Optimum water troughs for cattle, sheep and goats

Open Water Troughs
"drinking from open water surfaces in nature is typical for pasture livestock"
better than

Float Valve Bowl
"ideal for young stock and sensitive animals"
better than

Pipe Valve Bowl
"suitable for all types of animals"
better than

Nose-Paddle Bowl
"rugged, more difficult to activate, for fattening animals

② Daily water requirement for cattle, sheep and goats


Cattle, 1 year and older

Cattle, under 1 year

Calves up to 6 months


③ Mounting dimensions for cattle, sheep and goat troughs
④ Configuration of water troughs in free-stall barns

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