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Mukluk
May. 31, 2012, 01:20 AM
I board my horse and her water is a stock tank. It's probably 3 ft long 2 feet wide. There are a few gold fish living in there. I noticed she was not too keen on that tank and when given the chance would go to a different tank. I emptied half the water out of it today and added fresh in hopes it would be more to her liking. Any tips on keeping stock tank water nice for horsie? Thanks in advance.

Simbalism
May. 31, 2012, 01:33 AM
When I used to work at my trainer's barn and then later when I was leasing a small farm, we used to dump and scrub out the water troughs at least once per week( less in the winter) when the water would get low.

oldpony66
May. 31, 2012, 06:20 AM
Exactly what Simbalism said, and in the summer it's usually more often than once a week. But if your BO has goldfish in there, she/he probably doesn't want you to dump the water.
If you're concerned, ask if you can place another tank next to it and you can keep that one clean.

clanter
May. 31, 2012, 06:51 AM
I look at ours and if I wouldn't drink it then Ms Horse shouldn't, ours is dumped, scrubbed as needed which is about every other day.... did find using a kitchen broom made the scrubbing a stand up job

A thing that I have noticed when given a choice any of our horses will drink from the tanks that have a lower profile ... we have several that have sidewalls of about 15 inches and they prefer those over the 100 gallon tank... I guess those are closer to a more natural drinking elevation

gumtree
May. 31, 2012, 07:38 AM
I look at ours and if I wouldn't drink it then Ms Horse shouldn't, ours is dumped, scrubbed as needed which is about every other day.... did find using a kitchen broom made the scrubbing a stand up job

A thing that I have noticed when given a choice any of our horses will drink from the tanks that have a lower profile ... we have several that have sidewalls of about 15 inches and they prefer those over the 100 gallon tank... I guess those are closer to a more natural drinking elevation

This maybe true but I think it is more to due with the fact the smaller the tank the more it is cleaned and filled with fresh water. In the winter/cool months we use large tank. In the summer smaller so we are forced to clean and fill often.
My kingdom for more auto waters!

alibi_18
May. 31, 2012, 08:21 AM
Why is there fish in the horse's water tank?
Even for the fish's sake, the water needs to be changed/filtered/tank cleaned and all.

Put another tank with no fish!

lilitiger2
May. 31, 2012, 08:37 AM
I have 100 and 40 gall stock tanks that get dumped and scrubbed probably every other day. I use a pressure washer nozzle and a steel wire scrubber, as they get nasty with the hay they drop in there, but it doesn't really take very long to do. I totally agree; if I wouldn't drink out of it, I figure they won't either and I want them drinking!

Never heard of goldfish in a horse water tank....I think I would encourage them to live elsewhere so I can get that tank really clean! Or, as was suggested, get another tank for your horse (and probably the others!)

draftdriver
May. 31, 2012, 09:09 AM
The goldfish eat mosquito larvae. I have two goldfish, Syd and Leo, and they overwinter in the tank, too. They sort of go to sleep at the bottom. The pet store lady told me not to feed them when they go torpid like that, as they can't digest food when their metabolism is so low. It seems to be working well. I've had them for a number of years and there are no little wrigglers in the water any more..

LauraKY
May. 31, 2012, 11:18 AM
Depending on the temperature, I dump mine and bleach it at least once a week. When it starts to heat up, it gets dumped every night....mostly because I have one horse who loves to play in it and it turns into a muddy mess. I check the temp of the water too when I turn them out at night. Too hot and it gets dumped and refilled.

twelvegates
May. 31, 2012, 11:40 AM
I've been using this method for several years without issue.

First, ask the BO if you can move the fish to a different tank.

Next, scrub out the tank as best you can.

Third, buy some "Sodium Dichlor" at a pool/spa dealer (or through the internet). What you are looking for is sodium dichloro-s-triazinetrione dihydrate, 99%. (Here's an example: http://www.spadepot.com/shop/Dichlor-Sanitizing-Granules-1-lb-P618C43.aspx). Don't buy anything that has added chemicals to reduce precipitants, as you don't need it. Just look for the 99% dichlor.

Last, refill the tank while adding ONE scant teaspoon of dichlor per 100 gallons of water.

Obviously, this will not prevent sludge building from food dropping out of the horses' mouths, but it will eliminate all algae.

Once you are on top of the algae, you.will.never.scrub.again.

My horses immediately drink from the tank as soon as I go through this process. I top off the tank all week. Once a week, I dump, spray (yes, SPRAY not SCRUB) out the hay, dirt and grass backwash, then refill with water and the added dichlor. (Obviously, this can be done more frequently if you have bigger messes.)

I've researched dichlor, and it is used by our military to clean uncertain water supplies. It's also used in the US to sanitize municipal water. It's also popular with survivalists.:rolleyes:

Finally, it's DIRT CHEAP. I bought about a quart size for $7 and it lasts well over a year.

Daydream Believer
May. 31, 2012, 02:22 PM
twelvegates....would the Dichlor work with an auto waterer do you think? I have about 7 large stock tanks and it is just way too difficult to clean them weekly. I do the best I can but in our hot climate, algae buildup is a major issue.

trubandloki
May. 31, 2012, 02:34 PM
Twelve, that system does not cut down on the mosquito larvae does it?

lilitiger2
May. 31, 2012, 09:01 PM
Wow, live and learn! Hadn't heard of the goldfish idea but thats great! And good to know how to get rid of that $#%ing algae!

saultgirl
May. 31, 2012, 10:48 PM
Dump and scrub at least once per week. Note: If your barn owner doesn't do this already, you are just $hit out of luck. They will think your request is ridiculous and offensive and think YOU are ridiculous if you want to put another tank next to the existing one. And even if there are NO goldfish, don't even think about cleaning it yourself!

In my experience, even moderately clean water is really hard to find at boarding barns.

Jealoushe
May. 31, 2012, 11:10 PM
I have a stock tank filter that sits in the bottom and filters the water, it is designed for livestock. Keeps the tank cleaner, longer.

twelvegates
May. 31, 2012, 11:12 PM
DB -- If you have a holding tank for the water, before it moves into the automatic waterers, I'm sure you could add it to the tank and it would work. If you want to try it in each automatic waterer, you'll have to do the math, figure out the gallons in each waterer, and dose accordingly (a smidgen :D per waterer). I suspect you might want to add it a bit more frequently.

TandL -- Good question. I haven't had any issues with mosquitos because I also run a stock tank filter, which keeps the water in motion. And I dump the water regularly. I doubt the larvae could survive with the chlorine, but have no data to back that up. It's so cheap, I wonder if it wouldn't just be worth experimenting to see if the "smell" would deter the mosquitos from depositing their offspring in the water.

Also, dichlor has a pH of about 7, so it's in the ideal range for horse preference.

Simbalism
Jun. 1, 2012, 12:45 AM
Yep, should have added in my original post it would end up being every couple of days for cleaning the tub in the summer.

Mukluk
Jun. 1, 2012, 12:46 AM
Thanks for all the ideas. I think the fish are supposed to eat mosquito larvae, but if I can dump the tank regularly than hopefully the suckahs (Mosquito larvae) don't stand a chance. May move da fisheys to another stock tank. Just want horsey to be happy.

Chief2
Jun. 1, 2012, 06:19 AM
Another thought is to look if it is the tank itself causing the problem. We use a combination of Rubbermaid black plastic tanks and white enameled bath tubs for holding livestock water. Once the warm weather comes in, the black tank could be freshly scrubbed and filled with nice clean water, and the herd will still want to drink from the cleaned bathtubs instead. I don't know if the black tank leaches a plastic taste/odor into the tank in the heat, if the white enamel simply keeps the water cooler, or a combination of both. Didn't have the problem when using galvanized metal tanks.

nasalberry
Jun. 1, 2012, 07:56 AM
Question for fish people:
Could you use algae-eaters in the tank? Would they replace larvae-eating goldfish, or just be added with them? Are there any kind of fish that eats both larvae AND algae that could be used?

Daydream Believer
Jun. 1, 2012, 07:59 AM
Thanks twelvegates. I'll try and pic some Dichlor up tomorrow and give it a try.

Bank of Dad
Jun. 1, 2012, 08:31 AM
I have always added a cup of bleach to 100 gallons when I rinse and fill the tubs. It keeps the algae away. Plain bleach, no additives.

CFFarm
Jun. 1, 2012, 10:50 AM
I have always added a cup of bleach to 100 gallons when I rinse and fill the tubs. It keeps the algae away. Plain bleach, no additives.

^I dump and scrub mine as needed. Usually every couple of days. And scrub with bleach.

I've had fish ponds/water gardens in the past and to keep the water good you have to have a correct level of plants to fish. You would need a large water tank in part shade for them to do any good as far as algae goes. Remember they may eat the larvae but they also er,...function in it, as W. C. Fields would say, so if you don't have other critters in the tank to clean up after them....well you horse may object. Besides, if you change the water at least once a week you won't have mosquitos.

Romany
Jun. 1, 2012, 11:19 AM
DB -- If you have a holding tank for the water, before it moves into the automatic waterers, I'm sure you could add it to the tank and it would work. If you want to try it in each automatic waterer, you'll have to do the math, figure out the gallons in each waterer, and dose accordingly (a smidgen :D per waterer). I suspect you might want to add it a bit more frequently.

TandL -- Good question. I haven't had any issues with mosquitos because I also run a stock tank filter, which keeps the water in motion. And I dump the water regularly. I doubt the larvae could survive with the chlorine, but have no data to back that up. It's so cheap, I wonder if it wouldn't just be worth experimenting to see if the "smell" would deter the mosquitos from depositing their offspring in the water.

Also, dichlor has a pH of about 7, so it's in the ideal range for horse preference.

twelvegates - "stock tank filter"? Please explain, as I think that might be a good fix for our set-up! TIA :)

ponygirl
Jun. 1, 2012, 01:45 PM
Mosquito dunks work well for mosquito control. I've found barley bags to work for algae in my stock tank.

SomedaySoon
Jun. 1, 2012, 02:00 PM
I've found barley bags to work for algae in my stock tank.

This! The horse rescue I worked at used barley straw in net bags for the algae. It worked pretty well. We also dumped and scrubbed every week, but the year before the barley we were dumping and scrubbing more often (or they were algaeier if we didn't). Never had a problem with mosquitoes in the waterers.

jeannette
Jun. 1, 2012, 02:20 PM
we have big cement cattle waterers. only clean them when they break the water level thing. moss on top keeps the water cooler in our hot weather. we have mesquito fish in the tanks.
Some ranch manager that ran an 80,000 acre ranch got mad at me cause i had cleaned out one tank years ago. So i don't clean them now. even if there is a water bucket filled, the horses will go to the big old tanks.

JoZ
Jun. 1, 2012, 02:37 PM
we have big cement cattle waterers. only clean them when they break the water level thing. moss on top keeps the water cooler in our hot weather. we have mesquito fish in the tanks.
Some ranch manager that ran an 80,000 acre ranch got mad at me cause i had cleaned out one tank years ago. So i don't clean them now. even if there is a water bucket filled, the horses will go to the big old tanks.

Yes, I'll admit I have a bit of trouble with the "if I wouldn't drink out of it, why should my horse" line of reasoning. There are quite a few things my animals do that I wouldn't do, including drinking rain out of puddles! But we do make sure to monitor intake to make sure that they are still happy with their water troughs. I'd say we dump every couple of weeks but they are BIG drinkers so we are replacing 1/2 to 3/4 of the water daily.

I like the idea of the Di Chlor or bleach though.

Equibrit
Jun. 1, 2012, 03:03 PM
Clean every couple of days and keep THIS (http://www.walmart.com/ip/Orbit-14-Front-Trigger-Sprinkler-Wand/19598746) and THESE (http://www.walmart.com/ip/3M-Pad-Scotch-Brite-Maroon-Gen-Purpose-20Pk/15753835) close at hand. When needed put one of THESE (http://www.walmart.com/ip/3M-9419NA-Scotch-Brite-Paint-and-Rust-Stripper-Kit-Flat-Surface/20370746) in your drill and make toast of anything clinging to the sides of your tank.

twelvegates
Jun. 1, 2012, 03:26 PM
Romany: Here's the filter I use:

http://www.valleyvet.com/ct_detail.html?pgguid=8327fe0a-6025-4970-acc7-29017fffbc66

With the filter and the dichlor, my water tank is trouble free.

When I researched this, I found that cyanuric acid is added to the dichlor as a stabilizer for the chlorine, as UV light degrades chlorine. (You lose chlorine quickly on a sunny day.)

Since I don't want to turn this process into a headache chemistry experiment, I always dump my stock tank once a week.

Like all good horse owners, I've tasted the water immediately after my treatment process, and aside from the very faintest of chlorine smells, it was fine!

Remember that in hotter climates, you may need to add dichlor more often, because the chlorine will break down, but you should be able to monitor by checking for algae growth.

Joz: As for bleach vs. dichlor, if you decide to use bleach, use unscented, 2-3 oz per 100 gallons.

I chose the dichlor because it's pH is lower, at 7 vs. 12.

According to a Canadian study, horses prefer water when the pH is neutral (don't know if they like the more acidic water, as that factor is not mentioned in the article): http://www.thehorse.com/TopicSearch/Default.aspx?n=water-electrolytes&nID=12&ID=211

Prime Time Rider
Jun. 1, 2012, 11:08 PM
Try adding some apple cider vinegar to your water tanks. it changes the PH level but horses don't mind the taste at all. It works!

Win1
Jun. 9, 2012, 10:36 PM
I try to dump and spray out weekly. If I don't have time or if the water is too high I will just leave the hose running so that it overflows for a few minutes.

I also add two capfulls of bleach after a dump/clean. Not so much that it's noticable, you should not smell it. The horses love to drink right after I do this, they seem to like the tase of bleach and will lick empty buckets right after they've been bleached... wierd. It does nothing for the larvae.

spook1
Jun. 10, 2012, 07:36 AM
Yesterday was the first time I had ever seen goldfish in a water through. I was there to look a goat. I was just standing petting all the goats and horses as they milled around and happened to look at the tank and there were 4 goldfish! So I had to ask about them. The lady said she has fish in all the tanks that have auto water fillers. She said the fish make a huge difference in the mosquitos population. The fish were from Walmart and 4 or 5 yrs old. and fairly large. The water was mostly clear thought you could see the sediment on the bottom. There were 2 tanks one with fish and one smaller tank with out and was just cleaned and fresh. The horses and goat choose to drink from the tank with fish. The lady said she has always ut fish in tanks and that the reason there were no fish in the fresh tank was cause she just got it and hasn't made a walmart run...:lol:

LookmaNohands
Jun. 10, 2012, 08:37 AM
I tried gold fish once.

The raccoons thanked me.:yes:

Guilherme
Jun. 10, 2012, 10:05 AM
Clean the tank regularly and frequently (every couple of days or so) and you won't have either algae or mosquitos.

G.

P.S. Nor will you condemn your horse to eat fish pee and poo.

D Taylor
Jun. 10, 2012, 10:59 AM
Forget the fish.

Use copper sulfate. Dose the tank weekly with about a heaping tsp ( my tank is 150 gal). No fuss and copper is something your horse needs anyhow.