Almost finished with duck pen, now a question.

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by momma's chickens, Jun 13, 2008.

  1. momma's chickens

    momma's chickens Songster

    Mar 10, 2008
    Today the sun shined and we were able to finish our escape proof duck pen. We have sturdy hog panels, with the little holes, sunk in the ground and that is covered with bird netting all the sides and the top. We also have a shaded area for the ducks and a little kids swimming pool. We planted tall grasses and some other vegetation in there for them. Tomorrow we will put the electric fence around the outside of the pen so the ducks can't get to it and predators can't get to the ducks at night. We also need to build a duck shelter of some sort for them. I love it totally functional and I think it is nice looking too.

    My question is I think I should put something on top of the dirt to make it a little easier to drain and I don't know. I just think I should. Do you think I should put sand down or what and if so how much?

    Thank you!
  2. momma's chickens

    momma's chickens Songster

    Mar 10, 2008
    I think I have decided on sand, anybody want to jump in here and tell that is a bad decision?
  3. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    I use pea gravel and sand in mine.
  4. momma's chickens

    momma's chickens Songster

    Mar 10, 2008
    Okay, thank you very much! I put brick around the inside of it to keep the sand in when I dump the kiddie pool. I hope this is a good set up, I just sort of put ideas together. I will also get some gravel, we are going to get a load of it anyway to help with some muddy areas so that is great!
  5. DrakeMaiden

    DrakeMaiden Overrun with Drakes

    Jun 8, 2007
    Kitsap County, WA
    Either keep to sand or add pea gravel. Regular gravel I would not recommend, as it can be a little rough on their feet. They'd be ok, but it is harder for them to walk on and they will avoid walking on it if they can.

    If you use sand you'll want to keep topping it off, regardless of how deep you apply it. When you clean up, you'll lose a little every time.

    I don't use pea gravel, but I hear you can just spray it down to clean it.
  6. dangerouschicken

    dangerouschicken Will Barter For Coffee

    May 6, 2007
    Columbia Gorge, OR
    I used some straw, then added some every few days. Kept flies and smell down, but they are so messy I won't be having ducks again anytime soon.

    Should have gone with pea gravel I suppose [​IMG]
  7. I'm using sand for the pen/run and straw for bedding for the geese and the chickens (all breeds separated except geese are all together). Easy to rake up and move, too.
  8. DrakeMaiden

    DrakeMaiden Overrun with Drakes

    Jun 8, 2007
    Kitsap County, WA
    Yeah, I also use straw as bedding, but definitely keep to sand or pea gravel around the water!
  9. Calebs Acre

    Calebs Acre Songster

    May 17, 2008
    Long Island
    I've read a lot here about keeping chickens, but since I have ducks and geese, the mess is, as you know, horrible. What do most of you do to make it easier to clean and how to do actually clean the pens? I am not having as much trouble with my adult areas, because they are very large, but I now have a large number of juvenile ducks and geese who are in enclosed pens and I keep straw in their "houses", which can be easily cleaned up, but I am not sure how to set up their outside areas for easy cleaning?

    All ideas, comments, suggestions, advice WELCOME!
  10. dixygirl

    dixygirl Songster

    May 14, 2008
    Peagravel with the sand is great to give it more texture and stability. Actually I am beginning to see the benefit of using mostly peagravel with just a little sand so you can hose it off to clean and be done with it. I am also putting some bigger round rocks around the kiddie pool. But I also want to plant a patch of grass in there in the front so they can graze too. I haven't decided if i will plant seed or just buy two rows of sod for $4.00 for quick results. So I am going with a mix of all of that in their pen. I am convinced that dry wood chips, hay and straw have no business being in a duck's pen unless it is for a nest or brooding because they become wet, stinky and soggy. Those things are for dry land loving chickens not water loving ducks. They need tiny round rocks, sand and grass.
    I think it will work great.
    Good luck please post pictures.

    Good luck. [​IMG]

    Excuse me but on a side note, how are the duck nests supposed to look? like the chickens or just some straw?

    PS What kind of vegetation did you plant? I can't wait to see it. Sounds lovely
    I just decided i am going to plant pampas grass (Cortaderia Selloana) all around the sides and back outside the fence. The tall variety ( not the miniature ) is supposed to have blades that are razor sharp and you can cut deep in the skin just by passing it and it is also pretty. I want it all around the fence on the outside to help deter predators. So that will be kind a natural barrier I hope.
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    When it gets really tall and bushy it will muffle the noise of their quacking a bit too.
    There is a Cotton Candy Pink variety too
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2008

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