Ewes Paddock Trial, Nildottie

Trial Date January 2018

Trial Period

Ten weeks plus ongoing use of pumps

To determine levels of water consumption when using the pump system with a magnetic water softener


Paddock containing pregnant ewes

Water Type

Bore water - water analysis completed

Algae issues Yes, minimal algae due to water type
Stock type/numbers Pregnant ewes/260

Cleaning frequency (pre-trial)

 2 days


Trial Clarification 

Trough 1: The pump system with a magnetic water softener and water meter (located on the left in the video).

Trough 2: The pump system with water meter (centre trough in the video).

Trough 3: An original trough with water meter only (right trough in video, pump installed but not connected).

  • The three troughs were set up with water meters on each trough. Motion active video cameras were also installed to monitor animals' drinking habits and to determine if there was a preference to any of the trial troughs.

  • This information could also be used in conjunction with the water meter readings to see if there was any correlation, and also acts as a backup should the meters become inoperative as there would still be visual evidence.

Trial Comments

  • This trial was conducted to understand if the pumping system with the magnetic softener attached would have any effect on water consumption levels of pregnant ewes in a paddock situation.

  • Due to poor water flow to the troughs, the trial was difficult to gauge.

  • What was evident was the fine-scale residue at the bottom of the trough containing the pump and magnetic softener. These photos can be viewed in attached documents.

  • The client assisted in collecting water meter readings and was confident the ewes were consuming approximately 75% of the water from the troughs with the pump systems installed. 

  • The clients are convinced the system is great for their animals and now have approximately six units installed on their troughs, and relocate the units from farm to farm.

  • Another interesting observation from the trial was the drinking habits of the ewes. We know it is common that they swarm the troughs in high numbers. When there is poor water flow to the trough, are they actually all drinking healthy quantities of water? As seen in the videos some spend very little time at the trough drinking.  



Every five days with confidence.