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WHY do ducks start laying in the winter?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Does anyone know why waterfowl start laying their eggs in January? My call ducks started laying last week and when I had geese they layed in January too. It's all I can do to get the eggs in before they freeze, and I can't imagine they are even viable at these temps.

Wild ducks don't do this do they? How could they possibly keep the eggs warm long enough to hatch not to mention trying to raise the babies in the winter.
post #2 of 7


My ducks lay during the winter too; although their egg production does decrease a little bit. At first I thought it was weird, but I don't think it's harming them at all, so I just go with it. Laying is usually induced by amount of daylight and temperature. Mine live in a garage, so they have more light than a wild duck would. The garage is also heated, so they must think it is still ok to lay. 

Where are your ducks sleeping? Maybe the light or temperature in their bed is what is causing it. If you want to decrease their egg production, limit the amount of daylight they're exposed to. 


Edited by JJpuck - 1/21/16 at 3:28pm
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
They're out in the barn, no supplemental light or heat. Maybe it's something that's been bred into them from years of domestication. If it is, they weren't domesticated in Ohio, lol
post #4 of 7

is it warmer in the barn ? when i brought my  call ducks inside they began laying and mateing again my guess is because its a lot warmer.

A breeder of mallards(grey and black), Call ducks (2015 FINALLY!!!), (I also have a seabright and a bantam cochin)
I do not support the 4-h system
Jesus is the king rejoice!
NPIP certified
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A breeder of mallards(grey and black), Call ducks (2015 FINALLY!!!), (I also have a seabright and a bantam cochin)
I do not support the 4-h system
Jesus is the king rejoice!
NPIP certified
Reply
post #5 of 7
My Pekins' night pen is outside and they've been laying too, since middle of Jan. I thought egg production was tied to day length.???
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

Well the days did start getting longer since Dec. 21st, but it seems to me that an animal would know better than to try and have babies this time of year.  It has to be something with domestication because I know the Canada Geese around here don't start until it's much warmer out.

post #7 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by DoubletakeFarm View Post
 

Well the days did start getting longer since Dec. 21st, but it seems to me that an animal would know better than to try and have babies this time of year.  It has to be something with domestication because I know the Canada Geese around here don't start until it's much warmer out.

Domestic ducks are apt to lay any time of year - they have been bred and selected to do so.  I have two eggs from my flock this morning, in fact.  I am grateful.  And they are in where it's relatively warm (40sF), with plenty of nutritious food.

Please PM me, or use @Amiga in the message if you would like to hear from me soon.  

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Please PM me, or use @Amiga in the message if you would like to hear from me soon.  

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