We decided to get ducks this year. Really, I decided and DW went along with it somewhat unwillingly at first. I have been interested in ducks since we got chickens last Spring. We now have 8 chickens, 4 turkeys, 5 ducks, and a whole covey of quail (15 adults, 26 chicks and 40 eggs in the incubator at the moment). We got the ducks during a trip to get chicken feed at out local location of a farm supply chain store. They carry chicks in the Spring every year, but it was already mid summer. To my surprise they still were stocking a few bins full of chicks... and ducklings! I ended up purchasing 3 Rouens on the spot. DW was saying things like, "Where are you going to put them? Do you even know how to take care of them? Are you going to care for them, or am I like the other animals?" She was completely accurate in all of her thoughts, but we still bought them. We brought them home and brooded them in a dog crate.
Here they are pictured in their repurposed dog crate brooder. There was 1 chicken in there too (until the turkey poults came home a week or two later when the chicken was moved to another brooder with the turkeys).
I needed to figure out where I was going to keep the ducks when they were out of the brooder. After all, I couldn't admit to DW that she was correct in her thoughts that I had no idea what I was doing raising ducks. We built our chicken coop into our shed and there was a space under their poop board/roosts that we used to keep a large heavy duty tote full of chicken feed.
I decided to relocate the tote, and section off this area. It roughly measures 4'x4' and has roughly 3.5' of headroom. So I went to work framing the opening and installing handmade sliding doors using a bi-pass closet door kit.
Next I cut a door out for the ducks to lead into our fenced in pond that's next to our shed/coop. The pond was there before the ducks. I made it last year as an ornamental fish pond (koi and goldfish). It's approximately 1500 gallons. Understanding the risk of a duck getting a smaller fish, I decided I wanted the ducks in the pond. The door is rough still, but I am going to (eventually...) trim it with some 1x4 boards to make the opening square and nicer looking. I also intend to put a better ramp or shallow steps of some sort in front of the door.
The ducks are all happy in their new home and spend most of their time outside foraging and swimming in the pond.