A plethora of questions...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by MissJPJW, Oct 27, 2013.

  1. MissJPJW

    MissJPJW New Egg

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    Oct 27, 2013
    Canberra, ACT, Australia
    Hi Guys,

    So my name is Jacqui and I'm new to the forum.

    I've always had ducks and chickens as pets since i was around five so I know
    some general stuff; no onions or spinach, watch what they have access to in the yard, clip flight feathers, But, I always had runners and have recently acquired my first muscovy ducklings, they're about three weeks old at my guess, I've had them for two weeks and they were much larger than hatchlings when I got them, Their names are Atlas and Maxi, Atlas is much bigger than Maxi, so I have deduced that he's a drake, they're my only ducks for the minute. So to the questions:

    Are there any things about muscovies that I should look out for?

    I have a mixed breed large dog, His name is Koda and he is the biggest baby in the world, doesn't chase birds or attack anything that isn't a bug, But he is very excitable and wants to sniff all over the ducklings, Is there a way to get them used to him so that they don't attack him when they're older?

    They're fairly used to being handled, and will eat from my hand, but won't follow when I walk away or anything like that, Is this a bad thing? or are they just independant? Is there a way to get them to interact with humans more?

    they're indoors in a little pen in my living room with plenty of vegies (smashed peas, corn, sliced beans, lettuce) oat bran and weet bix for grains, tiny bits of shredded chicken and smashed boiled eggs with the shells for protein and roughage, they've also eaten some small snails and i monitored them after the snails, they behaved 100% normally, a large tub for bathing (20 Litres) and a bowl for drinking/assisting eating, does this sound sufficent?


    Any other advice is completely welcome,

    Thank you,
    Jacqui
    [​IMG]
     
  2. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

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    Hi Jacqui - and welcome to the forum!!

    I live down in Melbourne and have mostly Runners. Do you feed your babies any commercially produced feed or just what you listed? You may think that they are getting a balanced diet- but its so easy to overlook something- all the hard work and research has gone into production of commercial feeds and they do ensure that a growing baby is provided with the nutrients they need. If you really dont want to buy commercial feed you should consider getting some multivitamins to add to their water to be sure they are getting enough of the essential nutrients they need to grow.
     
  3. veronicasmom

    veronicasmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Welcome To BYC!!!
    I agree with Ducky from Oz, some appropriate commercial pellets should be fed too. And I think if you search on here for threads about feeding ducklings niacin you will find they need that too.

    Your ducks are darling. I have 4 Muscovies and I love them. I think in general ducks are rather independent, some are more people imprinted and will follow like dogs, but for the most part they are more standoffish as they age. I have them just to enjoy their antics and not as lap pets.

    It is my opinion that NO dog should ever be unattended while with any small animals. Believe me, I know first hand how fast things can go wrong and how it only takes a second for a dog to kill a small pet. It happened to me, not with a duck though. My dog is gentle and sweet, but he got one of my guinea pigs and in seconds Louis was dead. Dog was sound asleep downstairs and I left the room for a second and by the time I got back, he had snuck in and grabbed my pig. NEVER in a million years would I have thought he'd do that. It took a long time to get over and I am still beating myself up and will forever. I don't blame the dog, I blame me. Save yourself that heartache and guilt and try to monitor them at all times. I know some people have their dogs interact with their ducks, but I personally don't think it is wise. A dog is a dog is a dog, they cannot help sometimes that their instinct makes them do certain things.

    Good luck with your babies and we'd love to see more pics when you can!!
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Western N.C.
    Good advise been given by both posters, and just wanted to add about the dog, my dogs have been raised around ducks/geese and chickens their whole lives and last year one killed a duckling about the size of yours, shocked and heart broken and still wondering how I could have let it happen. So Never Ever underestimate what can happen in just a matter of second. Always supervise.my dogs can not be around very young birds now, Just not worth the heart ache. Even if a dog is only playing chase it can end up in the death of the bird. I love my Scovy's they are so sweet and when they wag their tails well Just makes me want to pick them up and hug one. Enjoy your ducklings. and [​IMG]
     
  5. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    On, Canada
    This sticky has good food info, i still feed all my birds a complete feed despite some being a few years old and that fact they forage.

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/750869/raising-and-caring-for-ducklings#post_10611711

    As for scovies in general, not really. They do roost but mainly the females, the drakes get pretty big and tend not to have the ability to get up as far as they age lol I have heavy long winters here so will Vaseline the facial flesh especially on the males..

    They fly females and well, mine can clear a 5ft fence like it was nothing, i leave mine full flight a personal preference as they free range, it gives them some form of escape. As for taming food is good, i have raised a few in my house before just this past summer actually when one of the dogs got into a nest triggering premature hatching.

    That said after they moved to the big flock there not in your pocket anymore, which suits me i prefer my ducks not follow me about and go to their job(pest control) but again that is a personal thing, treats/food are good motivators.

    In my experience i find scovies like big flocks, mine run in a flock of 20 now.. (with 2 odd ball buff orpingtons which add spice and quack lol) i have had bigger and smaller but i find they like more numbers but of coarse that is not an option for everyone, regardless a trio or more is good if you have a drake... so at least 2-3 females per if you can, this is of more significance in smaller flocks, my bigger flock is a bit skewed as i have leftover drakes from this years hatch but things are so chaotic with the massive amount of birds they don't actually fight as much as they did when i had less than 10.. go figure?

    The main difference i see between my mallard derived and these guys is the water, they do like to tubby now and then but there nothing like my calls or buffs... those are massive water ducks, scovies are happy with puddles and tend to gravitate more to land and dabbling in water.

    Enjoy! we'd love to see pics as they grow. [​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.

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