I'm going to order 4-6 female ducklings(Cayuga, blue Swedish, welsh harlequin, and pekin) from Metzer's unless there is somewhere I could drive to get them. I was going to drive to Holderread but my heart is set on a Cayuga and that is one of the discontinued breeds but I'll drive almost anywhere in Oregon or Washington if I can pick up all the ducklings there.
Brooder set up
My ducklings will be starting in their home, a converted shed, from the get go. My DH has a strict no animals in the house policy. Weather here is mild, and the shed is secure, well sheltered by my home, and not drafty though it does have ventilation up top. I can very easily run an extension cord out to the shed from the house that will not real be exposed to elements. Of course I'll need that for the brooder, but what else?
Inside their house I'll be doing a thick layer of hay with a tote with the side cut out to put the food and water, hopefully reducing wet hay. I'm going to copy some diy feeders/waterers from the site.
I really love the idea of the mama heating pad and am probably going to do this unless I hear otherwise
I'm planning to try the deep litter method, but if it gets too gross I'll stop
Nipple waterers, screw in type with gasket
Once they are older I don't want to leave the feeders and waterers in the house over night, but think that the nipple waterers will allow them 24/7 water while hopefully not spilling water in the coop. I've read that these sometimes leak. What would you recommend to help prevent that? Specific brand and/or process?
These will not be the only waterer, just the ones in their house at night. I want to have them available from the time they are ducklings so the can get used to it being around and using it.
I'm going to get one of the concrete tubs for now, until they have the kiddie pools at the store and then I will get one of those. Probably should be fine since they wouldn't be using a big pool for the first few months of life anyway.
Brand suggestions? Otherwise I'm probably just getting something organic and non medicated on Amazon.
Niacin capsules/Brewers yeast
I have Brewers yeast in the kitchen already, so will probably get them their own bottle. How much do you use?
Durvet Performance Poultry Probiotics & Electrolytes for poultry
Someone somewhere in all of my research said this was important, it's on the list now
I'm planning on getting 2 electrical fences because there are 2 areas I want them. They will have a few hours of free range almost daily when I can watch them. I will for sure have to defend them for cats, dogs, raccoons, skunks (are skunks a threat?), etc. the shed/home is super secure and will be inside one of the fences.
Please, someone, exactly which fence should I get. Hoping to keep both fences around $300 otherwise I may just get one and get the other next summer.
Not much to say here
Which brand would you recommend, otherwise it's probably just the Amazon available again
First aid kit
What are the starter must haves? Hoping to keep this about $20-30 for essentials.
From my research this is everything I should need to get started. Let me know if I'm missing anything and I'm eagerly awaiting everyone's input!