How to keep your livestock water trough clean and algae free

Clean trough water is vital for the survival of livestock and means healthier animals. Sounds simple? Not quite.

Without a regular cleaning routine the water in troughs can become stagnant, algae ridden and lead to high levels of toxins in the water. But conducting regular water checks and maintaining adequate water quality is time consuming, especially if one is to follow the recommendations per the Department of Agriculture, that ‘troughs should be emptied and cleaned once every one to two days’. 

For decades the livestock industry has been trying to find an easy and low-maintenance solution to this problem. None have ventured past the use of ‘elbow grease’ and some sort of chemical application, solution or tablet.

We have finally gained access to a new and innovative concept that keeps water aerated and clean without the manual efforts involved in regular cleaning routines. 

How to prevent algae growth through water aeration

The age old saying that ‘prevention is better than the cure’ can be applied to many things in life, such as keeping stock water troughs clean.

As opposed to using ‘elbow’ grease and a cleaning product for dirty troughs, using the concept of aeration will prevent algae from building up in the first place. This is a well-known concept, used by aquarium enthusiasts for many years to keep their tanks and thus the plants and fish in their tanks healthy while minimising the need for manual cleaning interventions.

So how does it work?

In a nutshell, water aeration is a process of maintaining and increasing the oxygen saturation of water, ensuring that water stays fresh for longer while reducing algal blooms. Additionally, by circulating water in a trough, the water softens and gets agitated, which helps avoid the build-up of scum on the walls of the troughs. Over the past years, several trials have shown a considerable reduction, and prevention of, algae due to the aeration process. 

How do we apply this process to your everyday trough?

An innovative solution to keeping livestock trough water clean

After 5 years of research and development Croc has brought to life what they call the ‘Croc Trough Solar Trough System’. This unique concept improves water quality through circulating, softening, and agitating the water, providing a complete trough system, all powered by the sun.  

The Croc Trough Pumping System has been designed to improve the quality of animals drinking water and data from over 25 private trials have shown a considerable reduction in algae due to the aeration process. In nearly all private trials the time involved in maintaining clean troughs has halved. Depending on the size of your enterprise, this might amount to a substantial saving in costs. Magnets have been shown to break down compounds and allow nutrients to be more available to animals, resulting in better growth patterns.

The underlying message supported by the data: all livestock farmers would benefit in using a solar-powered aeration system to improve their animals’ health and their bottom line by:

  • Reduced algal growth
  • Reduced trough cleaning time
  • Enhanced water quality 

Solar trough system  – sizes

The Solar Trough System comes in two sizes, suitable for small and large enterprises.

The small size TPS20 is recommended for pastoral operations including smaller rectangular troughs of less than 2.5m, round troughs up to 1.5m, horse troughs, poultry, goats and any small volume trough.  

The Solar Trough System TPS50 is recommended for larger troughs, including round and oval troughs over 1.5m in diameter, and rectangular troughs over 2.5m in length. It is recommended to implement additional pumps in rectangular troughs larger than 5 metres long. The TPS50 is recommended for high use operations including feedlots and larger herds.

The best thing about this system is that they can be used on existing troughs; just remember to protect the system as livestock will love playing with it!

Making life even easier, the system is plug and play – it requires no assembly other than plugging it into the solar panel. Note that you will need to put a post in the ground to ensure the panel is kept out of harm’s way and if you need to protect the pump from livestock you may need to fashion a mesh cover.

So, whether you have cattle, sheep, horses or goats, your livestock deserves the best quality of water that Croc TPS can provide. 

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