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When is it too cold for ducks? - it's freezing in Portland, OR

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 

Hi - this is my first winter with ducks and this morning there was an inch of frozen ice over their baby pool pond and there were ice shards in their covered secure night coop.  They sleep in a coop made out of plywood, no insulation but they have about 6 inches of shavings.
How cold is too cold for ducks? I want them to be happy and comfortable. Do I need to put them in the garage at night when it's this cold? Does it hurt their feet to walk around on frozen ground? They seem happy but it just seems so miserable outside.

Any other cold weather preparations I should do?

Thank you!

3 runner ducks and one awesome cat named Larry
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3 runner ducks and one awesome cat named Larry
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post #2 of 32

here in Nova Scotia we have ducks in the Halifax Harbour all year round... any open water (ie: moving water) they are fine and it gets really cold here, if they can float in water in fridgid temperatures I am sure their little hut with shavings will be great.

post #3 of 32

This is from the Oregon mountains at around 4000 feet.  We have about 25 degrees right now and my ducks are moving in the snow.  I did put out some shelters with hay in it in their daytime outdoor pen.  I even put down some hay onto the ground so they can get their feet off the cold ground.  So far not to much interest besides looking for seeds in it.  Ducks can handle freezing temps very well.  I will put them up into their small pen once it hits 20 degrees with access to their heated duck house.  We are expecting -8 tonight.  The duck house has an oil filled heater in it.  I've read a website of a German guy.  He said he fills buckets with hot water, crews on the lid and puts it into his small duck house to keep them warm when it get to cold.  I would not worry to much as long as it is above 20 degrees.  The shelter is great to keep them out of the wind and their downs will keep them warm.

post #4 of 32

I live in central Kansas and I've got call ducks.  We get cold temps (teens and lower)and even colder wind chills and varying amounts of snow but mine very rarely go into their shelter...... a non heated dog house.

I'm a Farmer/Rancher  Wife,Mom & Grandma  No Farms, No food. 
If you want house chickens and ducks in diapers then this is the forum for you.
I've got 50+ years of poultry experience, but this 'poultry' forum isn't for me anymore.
If you're going to complain about farmers, don't do it with a full belly or a mouthful.
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I'm a Farmer/Rancher  Wife,Mom & Grandma  No Farms, No food. 
If you want house chickens and ducks in diapers then this is the forum for you.
I've got 50+ years of poultry experience, but this 'poultry' forum isn't for me anymore.
If you're going to complain about farmers, don't do it with a full belly or a mouthful.
Reply
post #5 of 32

It was well below 20F here last night. I got up this AM and opened the door to the duck house (4x4x4 non-insulated plywood, but with a shingled roof and totally out of the wind, with about 8-10" of wood shavings and straw) and they were just fine. Jumped right out and started their wing flapping stretches. Blew all the straw around that I had laid down for them to keep their feet warm. Silly Ducks. I brought them fresh water, not quite luke warmish, and their food and they dove right in. Tried to jump in their pond, but it is frozen solid. I tried to hack through the surface, but it's not just surface ice. Bit of a surprise for them! What the heck?

They have now settled themselves on the straw in the chicken run, much to the chickens annoyance. It is even more sheltered than the duck run. The chickens are just hanging out in their coop which has a heat lamp. I'm just waiting for the ducks to decide to go in there. It's much bigger than their duck house. I am always having to shoo the chickens out of the duck house when they get into the duck run.......

It is currently 10F. I keep going to check on them, but everyone seems fine, eating, drinking, shnurfling around and staring at each other.

3 Mallards, 2 Rouens (1 drake),  Jumbo Pekin, Welsh Harlequin, 8 hens - RIRs, Gold-laced Wyandotte, Buff Orpington, Silver-Laced Wyandotte, Buff Brahma, Welsummer, 2 Roo's - Delaware, Speckled Sussex, 1 lovable old dog, 2 geckos, 2 snakes, 2 goldfish, 1 male Beta

RIP Ghost, Gene and Onyx - we miss you girls

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3 Mallards, 2 Rouens (1 drake),  Jumbo Pekin, Welsh Harlequin, 8 hens - RIRs, Gold-laced Wyandotte, Buff Orpington, Silver-Laced Wyandotte, Buff Brahma, Welsummer, 2 Roo's - Delaware, Speckled Sussex, 1 lovable old dog, 2 geckos, 2 snakes, 2 goldfish, 1 male Beta

RIP Ghost, Gene and Onyx - we miss you girls

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post #6 of 32
Thread Starter 

Thank you! I think I'll go get some hay so their feet can stay warm.

3 runner ducks and one awesome cat named Larry
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3 runner ducks and one awesome cat named Larry
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post #7 of 32

My first winter and ALL I do is worry~~~ ugghhhh... this morning I stop before work to find them in their pond so I make them come in the hut which is heated,  to eat (set on low) ..,,  they have duckiecylces on their backs and Omlet did set on her feet for a minute. I have completely enclosed their pen , put straw out in several places, put a tank heater in their pond (but it doesnt kick in til its 32 degrees) and always keep a blanket by the pond ( I know  I know they r ducks) but they like to sleep there..  they are pretty much draft free but I worry about them staying in the pond all nite. !!!  At some point do I leave it drained or maybe cover it at nite!! and we think when its down to zero or in the minus degress we should just make them stay in the Hut all nite ??I have been keeping their feed in the Hut so they have to go in to eat but some nites they dont touch it...  I know they be fine but since I HATE THE COLD I think every living creature should as well....


http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/43749_2010-09-29_19-10-39_225.jpg

I put straw all over in the back half up to their mud hole  (dont have a pic w/straw tho)
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/43749_2010-09-29_19-11-26_955.jpg

1 DH, & 8 Calls .. Omlet, Ramrod, Blacktop, Holeshot, Luna, Seven, Riot, and Smudge.
And of course the One who made all this happen (me becoming Duck Obsessed) "HotRod"....(my wild wood duck)
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1 DH, & 8 Calls .. Omlet, Ramrod, Blacktop, Holeshot, Luna, Seven, Riot, and Smudge.
And of course the One who made all this happen (me becoming Duck Obsessed) "HotRod"....(my wild wood duck)
Reply
post #8 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katy 

I live in central Kansas and I've got call ducks.  We get cold temps (teens and lower)and even colder wind chills and varying amounts of snow but mine very rarely go into their shelter...... a non heated dog house.


Ducks can handle it. last year we had a ton and a half of snow here and the only thing they didn't like was the fact that there pond was frozen over and they had to wait for me to break it.

post #9 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hattiegun 

My first winter and ALL I do is worry~~~ ugghhhh... this morning I stop before work to find them in their pond so I make them come in the hut which is heated,  to eat (set on low) ..,,  they have duckiecylces on their backs and Omlet did set on her feet for a minute. I have completely enclosed their pen , put straw out in several places, put a tank heater in their pond (but it doesnt kick in til its 32 degrees) and always keep a blanket by the pond ( I know  I know they r ducks) but they like to sleep there..  they are pretty much draft free but I worry about them staying in the pond all nite. !!!  At some point do I leave it drained or maybe cover it at nite!! and we think when its down to zero or in the minus degress we should just make them stay in the Hut all nite ??I have been keeping their feed in the Hut so they have to go in to eat but some nites they dont touch it...  I know they be fine but since I HATE THE COLD I think every living creature should as well....


http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/43749_2010-09-29_19-10-39_225.jpg

I put straw all over in the back half up to their mud hole  (dont have a pic w/straw tho)
http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/uploads/43749_2010-09-29_19-11-26_955.jpg


They should be fine in there pond as long as it doesn't freeze, which you already have covered with the stock tank heater. With all that protection from the wind and the blanket, heck i could camp in there. I have camped in worse conditions and the ducks have down. lol


Edited by KansasKid - 11/23/10 at 11:12am
post #10 of 32

it was 17F here this morning & the ducks were all standing in their pool trying to figure out why the water was hard lol .  I had to use a hammer to break the 2" ice but they were lovin it as soon they could get in the water!  I did have to scoop out the chicken pen though, they were NOT agreeing with the frozen ground at all!

LF BBS Wyandottes, 1 chihuahua(izzy), 1 mouse cat(inky).
"Not all of Gods creatures are cute & cuddly but they have just as much right to be here as you and I."
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LF BBS Wyandottes, 1 chihuahua(izzy), 1 mouse cat(inky).
"Not all of Gods creatures are cute & cuddly but they have just as much right to be here as you and I."
Reply
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