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Automatic watering system for off the grid farm?

 
Ashley Price
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In about a month I'll be buying 3 ewe lambs to board at my friend's farm that has no running water. I'm trying to find some way to get water from their large pond pumped to the sheep's water trough. We'll have the sheep in rotational paddocks so they won't have direct access to the ponds.

I'm having a hard time finding a pump that obviously will work in this situation. I seem to find stuff about sump pumps or well pumps. Can a sump pump be used to send water from a pond to a trough? How do you ensure it's not sending water continuously? Would a well pump work in a pond?

Or do you have any other ideas?
 
Gail Gardner
Posts: 28
Location: SE Oklahoma
duck forest garden hugelkultur
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Ashley Price wrote:In about a month I'll be buying 3 ewe lambs to board at my friend's farm that has no running water. I'm trying to find some way to get water from their large pond pumped to the sheep's water trough. We'll have the sheep in rotational paddocks so they won't have direct access to the ponds.

I'm having a hard time finding a pump that obviously will work in this situation. I seem to find stuff about sump pumps or well pumps. Can a sump pump be used to send water from a pond to a trough? How do you ensure it's not sending water continuously? Would a well pump work in a pond?

Or do you have any other ideas?


The organic farm where I am ordered a pump from this page on Harbor Freight http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result?q=water+pump. First, he tried the clear water pump, and it lasted maybe one season watering plasticulture rows. This year he bought the full trash pump. He took it to McCoys Building Supply and they helped him figure out what fittings to use. If there aren't any around you, other hardware or farm stores would likely carry the fittings.

There is a combination of PVC fittings and large flexible blue irrigation hose. He thinks he bought the blue hose at Tractor Supply. Any type of hose could work as long as you have the fittings to attach it to the pump.

Another alternative that MIGHT work is what is written in this irrigation guide http://www.tractorsupply.com/know-how_farm-ranch_farm-equipment_sprinkler-pumps-buying-guide or these irrigation pumps: http://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/search/irrigation%20pump. I don't see the large, blue flexible hose there so maybe he bought it at an irrigation specialty store. TractorSupply does have irrigation pipe at http://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/search/irrigation#facet:30744573456166767058010511210132841179810511010332383272111115101115&productBeginIndex:0&orderBy:&pageView:&minPrice:&maxPrice:&pageSize:&.

ANOTHER WAY TO WATER LIVESTOCK WHERE THERE IS NO WATER

I had a 150 gallon white water tank like this http://www.plastic-mart.com/product/5895/150-gallon-horizontal-applicator-tank-hz0150-30 mounted on a home-built, 2 wheel trailer I towed behind my pickup truck. In the rural area of Texas where I was, there was a community standpipe. I would haul it over there, fill it with water, bring it back and either hook it to a regular water pump OR back up to the water tank the horses drank from and filled them up.

I used it one winter when the pipes froze solid. I filled it up at a neighbors who had a faucet on their garage that didn't freeze, and filled large buckets from it to hand water.  The tank had a hose coming out the bottom angled down that had a gate to shut off or open up and let the water out. You could also use a reducer and regular gate valve on it. I suspect it had the large gate shutoff on it because the hose opening on the tank was large - at least 3-4" maybe even 6". (It was years ago so I don't remember it that well.)

I've seen people do something similar with a tank they just put on their pickup, filled with water, then used the water out of it so they could easily move the tank again. Even a 55 gallon bucket would work for small livestock, provided you could make a way to get the water out easily.
 
I agree. Here's the link: https://richsoil.com/wood-heat.jsp
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