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Stubborn Ducks

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
I have 5 week old Pekin ducks. Two days ago I set up their food and water in different containers. They wont touch it! I introduced all of them to the new containers but no go. As soon as I let them out they run to the pond and drink like crazy. They also eat their treats while Im training them. What do I do? Do they need more time?
post #2 of 11

Have you tried putting their favorite treats into their new food and water bowls (with water and food in them as well)? That might get them to gain the courage to give the new bowls a try. You can also try sprinkling some treats around the bowls as well to get them closer to the bowls if they are still wary. Then toss treats right into the bowls and they should go after them. Once they figure out the bowls are not going to eat them, it should be ok. ;)

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks! Ill give that a try. We went from wide open containers to hanging containers to try and control some of the waste and mess. Ive made sure they can still get their entire bill in the water. Ill try and put some peas in the containers to encourage them to use. Thanks again!
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
Okay, going on day three of the ducks not using the new containers. Ive tried putting their favorite treats in them. No dice. Ive put their faces up to them. They have not eaten their feed for three days now. Im afraid to let it go longer but dont want to give them feed anywhere else, either. They free range all day and I put kale and peas in their pool. So, they are eating just not their feed. Any other ideas? Or should I just give up on the new feeders?
post #5 of 11

What happens when you put them on the ground? Will they use them?  If it's a nippled watering system I understand that defeats the purpose.  How stable are the containers?  

And lastly, is there any storage or shipping film (light grease or otherwise) that's covering them, or any noticeable odor?  Just spit balling here...  

post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
When I put them on the ground they freak out and run like crazy. We did the 5 gallon bucket with the large bowl attached to the bottom hanging low to the ground. No ordors. We bought everything brand new and cleaned out before using with hit water only.
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 
post #8 of 11

How strange that a duck or ducks can be so picky!!  It seems to me that there is something about the containers that are causing them to not trust / freak out about your new waterers / feeders.  Color? or any other graphic on it that might be offensive to a duck??  Now I'm really reaching. What about the old "tough love" trick?  Put their food out and not feed anything else until they eat out of it.  There are limits of course, but those are best set by you.  I'm clearly stumped.

post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Ill try the hold back method. Not sure how many days I should wait? Does that also include not letting them out to forage?
post #10 of 11

Well, now that you said that.  BAM!  Are they getting their fill through foraging maybe?  I know for us, our feed usage went up in the winter but now that warmer weather is coming on, the feed bowl doesn't get quite as empty as it did a few weeks ago.  They might be filling up foraging.  I think a natural diet is better for them, so no, I would not stop allowing them to forage.  Do you have an old bowl laying around you can throw food into and see if they eat it?  Ours forage and hit the feed bins all day long.  I stopped putting feed and water in their night-time coop last year and that helps significantly with keeping their sleeping quarters clean.

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