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call ducks moved to river

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

We have 7 call ducks (2 female, 5 male), 45 chickens that free range during the day and come in the barn at night. Three drakes (6 months) that hatched this summer were no-shows at bed check a week ago. We found them swimming in our small and shallow river, about 300-400 feet from the barn. The river is still mostly open but icing over (we are in northeast Wisconsin) I was delighted to find them alive and swimming and looking content and have been bring food to toss onto the ice. Today, one is missing, I'm guessing a predator. I want to get the others back to the barn but 1)their wings are not clipped and they could go back themselves if they wanted to go back(2) I do not want to risk falling into the river to try to catch them. We have a net but I'd have to get on the ice to get close. Does anyone have any ideas? I've thought of bringing a load of straw by the bank for them to keep warm. I can continue to feed them. But clearly they are likely to be killed by something. And as weather gets colder, what is the likelihood they would survive?

post #2 of 5

Have you tried enticing them out of the water with some yummy treats? Might be easier to catch them if you can get them on land. Whatever took the one duck will be back again now that it knows where it can find an easy meal. If you do get the other two out of the water I suggest you clip their wings. They may not like it but it is in their best interest if it means they stay in a safer place.

 

Also, something to keep in mind, your male to female ratio is very high. You need to keep an eye on your females and make sure the males don't over-mate them.

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by claraserena View Post

We have 7 call ducks (2 female, 5 male), 45 chickens that free range during the day and come in the barn at night. Three drakes (6 months) that hatched this summer were no-shows at bed check a week ago. We found them swimming in our small and shallow river, about 300-400 feet from the barn. The river is still mostly open but icing over (we are in northeast Wisconsin) I was delighted to find them alive and swimming and looking content and have been bring food to toss onto the ice. Today, one is missing, I'm guessing a predator. I want to get the others back to the barn but 1)their wings are not clipped and they could go back themselves if they wanted to go back(2) I do not want to risk falling into the river to try to catch them. We have a net but I'd have to get on the ice to get close. Does anyone have any ideas? I've thought of bringing a load of straw by the bank for them to keep warm. I can continue to feed them. But clearly they are likely to be killed by something. And as weather gets colder, what is the likelihood they would survive?
post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thank you, lomine. I tried luring them off the ice and onto shore with treats--they just didn't get close enough for me to catch them. I even brought along a female in a pet carrier thinking that might help but she stayed silent. 

Yes, too many males to females. Maybe that explains why these 3 left--to set up new territory. We've had ducks for 6 years and these are the first to discover the river.

I will keep trying.

post #5 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by claraserena View Post
 

Thank you, lomine. I tried luring them off the ice and onto shore with treats--they just didn't get close enough for me to catch them. I even brought along a female in a pet carrier thinking that might help but she stayed silent. 

Yes, too many males to females. Maybe that explains why these 3 left--to set up new territory. We've had ducks for 6 years and these are the first to discover the river.

I will keep trying.

I caught 2 Muscovy drakes at our river by setting up a dog x pen left the opening facing the river so when they came out to eat [food was all the way to the closed side] I quickly walked up and closed off the open end. Went in and caught them and put them in a dog carrier to bring home.  I feed them this way for a few days to get them use to walking into the open pen.  You'll have to be quick but it can be done. @claraserena 


Edited by Miss Lydia - 1/7/16 at 9:02am

 Western N.C ~ 17 chickens= EE's, Game, variety of bantams,1Light Brahma, 2 Black Australorps . 5 Muscovy ducks, 8 Indian Runners and 2 Buff Orpington Ducks, 1 Embden gander,1 Toulouse goose , 3 mini Dachshunds, 2 mixed breed, pond goldfish,  and a wonderful Husband who makes it all possible..

 

http://www.faithpot.com/you-cover-me/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email...

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 Western N.C ~ 17 chickens= EE's, Game, variety of bantams,1Light Brahma, 2 Black Australorps . 5 Muscovy ducks, 8 Indian Runners and 2 Buff Orpington Ducks, 1 Embden gander,1 Toulouse goose , 3 mini Dachshunds, 2 mixed breed, pond goldfish,  and a wonderful Husband who makes it all possible..

 

http://www.faithpot.com/you-cover-me/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email...

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