1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Advice on winter boarding for ducks and a rooster

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by trinak, Sep 25, 2016.

  1. trinak

    trinak New Egg

    5
    0
    7
    Jul 28, 2016
    Oh boy I am freaking out. I met with a very nice woman today who has offered to watch my 5 ducks and rooster for the winter. She keeps chickens herself. Her coop and run is already divided since this area has been used for different purposes in the past. The coop is fine. I didn't see any obvious issues with security there. The run should be okay too. It has a high fence that looks sturdy with no breaches I could find, although I've learned from past experience there's never any guarantee there. The issue is when I was talking with her I found out she had ducks before...briefly. She got them young from a friend who raised ducks. All but one met horrible ends. The last survivor she gave back to the person who she got the ducks from originally. Four of them were lost to one of her dogs "playing too rough". Another one got sick and died within a few days and another one, she has no idea what happened. Fine one day, gone the next. After losing the ducks she got chickens and she's had those for about a month. No incidents of illness or animal attacks with the chickens. My 3 ladies and rooster are about a year old now and the 2 drakes I have are about 2 years old so these aren't babies. I'm no saint in the duck department myself. I started off with a lot more ducks in my original batch and lost them to raccoons so I doubt I'm in any position to judge. Boy I wish I could load these guys up and take them to California with me. I haven't even left yet and I'm already having separation anxiety! I'm supposed to take my guys over on Tuesday after she has a few days to do her final prep. Any suggestions for how to proceed? Maybe there's some guidelines/safety measures I can pass on. It's also possible I'm getting excited over nothing. Maybe she's learned some lessons from her previous experience and will be more vigilant this time around. I want to make this work because I had such a hard time finding an option for winter boarding but the other half of me is tempted to just pack them up, take them with me and hope for the best (not really an option but it would be my preference).
     
  2. redsoxs

    redsoxs Chicken Obsessed

    25,645
    1,828
    463
    Jul 17, 2011
    North Central Kansas
    It's a tough dilemma. You don't want to be judgie or preachy to the person who is watching your birds....but you also don't want your birds carried off by a predator if her coop is suspect. Can you offer to make a few "repairs" and incur the the cost and labor yourself? A little hardware cloth here, a better latch there, type of thing? The person might not be offended and you'd doing her a favor as well as your improvements will help with the security of her birds as well.
     
  3. trinak

    trinak New Egg

    5
    0
    7
    Jul 28, 2016
    That's good advice. I'll offer to make a few repairs to button things up a bit. I certainly don't want to get preachy with her. I'd hate to leave that impression. She's doing me a huge favor. I did find out more about what happened to the ducklings that got attacked by the dog. The openings in the fence she originally had up were too large and some of the ducklings ran out. She's since fixed the problem so I feel better about that. Her dogs do help keep the raccoons and other predators away so that's definitely a plus.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by