Thursday, July 5, 2012

Confusion about using misters on chickens

Hi all. With the recent bouts of extreme temperatures, the concept of using a mister to keep your chickens cool has been a hot topic.

**Just so you don't think this is coming from someone who has chickens, has a blog and a Facebook page and knows nothing about "evaporative cooling", I own and operate a heating and air conditioning company and have also graduated with a degree in thermodynamics.

CHICKENS DON'T LIKE TO BE WET. This is obvious by reading everyone's comments about how their chickens have reacted to their misters.

The most simplest form and example of evaporative cooling is perspiration, or the sweat secreted by our bodies. The constant evaporation occurring on the skin helps to cool the bodies temperature down. The amount of heat transfer depends on how quickly the evaporation occurs but on a typical 95 deg day is about 890 BTU per pound of water. The rate of evaporation depends on the temperature and humidity of the air (wet bulb temperature), which is why on those super hot, humid days our bodies are soaking wet because that perspiration does not evaporate fast enough.

What is a real mister? Well a real mister is not one you purchase for 7$ from an amazon link or big box store. Also those are not true evaporative coolers, and are not designed to be used in such a manner. Those are intended to be used on delicate plantings that benefit from light droplets of water. A mister or evaporative cooler, in the professional world, consists of a pure water supply, properly sized tubing, a compressor, filters and multiple appropriate sized nozzles. They are designed to cool the air without the targeted area or subjects ever getting wet. If you would rather invest in this type, get ready to spend some money because the entry level systems begin at around $1500.00-2000.00.

My bottom line to this discussion is use common sense. Do not try to force something on anything that clearly doesn't like it. If it is hot out, make sure to provide your birds with cold fresh water, plenty of shade, a fan and leave them alone. If you say your chickens dig your mister setup, please show me pictures of them in action. I love to be proven wrong. Peace out. ~ Kevin

Photo credits:

1 comment :

  1. I'd be happy to share my photos of my $7.00 mister set-up with you, Kevin. My chickens love the cooling effects it unquestionably gives off around it. They did not suffer from heat stress in the extremely high temperatures we have had this month and I have countless Facebook fans who report the same. My mister does NOT make my chickens WET. They do not stand underneath it. It keeps the shady area around the mister at least 20° cooler than it would be without it and that can mean the difference between live and death to chickens in 100° temps. To me, THAT is common sense.
    I'm not sure what you're looking to see in a photo, but if you shoot me your email address I'll be happy to share my chicken mister pictures with you:



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