Alright Duck owners! FILL ME WITH YOUR KNOWLEDGE!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Chick_a_dee, Nov 29, 2008.

  1. Chick_a_dee

    Chick_a_dee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2008
    Peterborough, ON
    We're ordering 3 Buff ducks as soon as Performance Poultry is taking orders, lady ducks of course, and I need some filling with knowledge!

    Here are some things I know:

    I need to build a house or shelter, ours will be off the ground on stilts, and will have enough space for almost 10 birds should we decide to increase the flock.

    I need a pen, clearly, because of the predators


    Here are some things I need to know:

    What food do I need to start them out on?

    Are they big flyers? I've read that Buff ducks rarely fly

    How hardy are they? We live in Southeastern Ontario, I'm just curious even though they will have a fully draft proof and insulated duck house

    At what age should they be taken outside into the duckhouse to live?

    How about roosts? Do I need them, Length, How high up off the floor?

    Should my nest boxes be floor level?

    Will they walk down a ramp to get out of the duckhouse? It will be up about 1.5' to 2' off the ground with shelter underneath

    What should I avoid feeding them?

    What about brooder lamp, red light, white light, how hot?

    ANYTHING ELSE I NEED TO KNOW
     
  2. unionwirewoman

    unionwirewoman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 14, 2007
    Kalispell , MT
    Ducks are very messy with their water and food.....that's why I butchered ours. We get cold temps here , and I just couldn't see how I could keep their pen clean . Good luck....hopefully someone else will post with more knowledge than I have ![​IMG]
     
  3. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

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    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    Quote:i would start them on game bird starter or chick starter (un-medicated!)

    Nah..miine dont really fly at all...just a little..a few feet..

    they dont use roosts..they snuggle down into deep straw..

    the nest boxes should also be on the ground..not higher up...

    my ducks house is also off the ground a little bit..i just made them little steps out of paving stones...they walk up and down them....

    handle them alot...and they will love you!..mine follow me around my yard..calling me..and if they even hear my voice..they start to call me and come running to see me..they are really great pets...good luck!, Wendy
     
  4. Chick_a_dee

    Chick_a_dee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2008
    Peterborough, ON
    Quote:i would start them on game bird starter or chick starter (un-medicated!)

    Nah..miine dont really fly at all...just a little..a few feet..

    they dont use roosts..they snuggle down into deep straw..

    the nest boxes should also be on the ground..not higher up...

    my ducks house is also off the ground a little bit..i just made them little steps out of paving stones...they walk up and down them....

    handle them alot...and they will love you!..mine follow me around my yard..calling me..and if they even hear my voice..they start to call me and come running to see me..they are really great pets...good luck!, Wendy

    Awww I'm so excited! They'll be sharing a large communal barnyard (or poultry yard) with the chickens as well as having their own smaller run. We're making the duckhouse bigger than we need, so we can increase the flock if we should desire.

    Can't wait to get our buffs!
     
  5. Chick_a_dee

    Chick_a_dee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2008
    Peterborough, ON
    Quote:Lol, I've heard that ducks can go overnight without water, so I'm thinking that is what will be happening, their food will be inside in a hanging feeder. I've found a lot of people saying chickens are wasteful with their feed, but ours are very good with it, and I don't replenish the feed until they've scratched at the bits they've tossed out and eaten them up.

    It's already been 14 below, and it's only November!
     
  6. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

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    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    ooh..you'll love them for sure!..yesterday i was on my deck..and Plucky heard me talking to the dogs...she comes running and quacking across the yard to see me...she sat at the deck steps till i petted her...[​IMG]..i really do love them...
     
  7. redhen

    redhen Kiss My Grits... Premium Member

    35,112
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    May 19, 2008
    Western MA
    Quote:Lol, I've heard that ducks can go overnight without water, so I'm thinking that is what will be happening, their food will be inside in a hanging feeder. I've found a lot of people saying chickens are wasteful with their feed, but ours are very good with it, and I don't replenish the feed until they've scratched at the bits they've tossed out and eaten them up.

    It's already been 14 below, and it's only November!

    they are very winter hardy...(even though it still bothers me to leave them outside)...for the winter i just bought a heated dog water bowl..it works great..and for keeping the duck house clean...i have one side that is only big enough for them to sleep and nest..and its filled with straw...the other part of the house, where i keep the food/water is wire..because they are sooo messy...its super easy this way...the food and water just drop down through the wire....and they still have the warm straw side that i just clean out every couple of days and give them fresh straw...
     
  8. babyboy1_mom

    babyboy1_mom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 13, 2008
    Louisiana
    Quote:Lol, I've heard that ducks can go overnight without water, so I'm thinking that is what will be happening, their food will be inside in a hanging feeder. I've found a lot of people saying chickens are wasteful with their feed, but ours are very good with it, and I don't replenish the feed until they've scratched at the bits they've tossed out and eaten them up.

    It's already been 14 below, and it's only November!

    Just make sure that if they are able to eat food, that they are able to get water. The ducks can and will choke to death if they eat and cannot get any water to wash it down.
     
  9. Chick_a_dee

    Chick_a_dee Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2008
    Peterborough, ON
    Sounds okay, perhaps I can design and rig up some sort of gravity fed watering system for them.
     
  10. Goat_Walker

    Goat_Walker I Am THE Crazy Duck Lady

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    Jul 9, 2008
    Maryland
    I have a buff female. She has been known to fly out of her yard , but doesnt do it much.

    she is the only one that WILL use a ramp! My drakes wont use one, but she has used my ramps and even goat ladders!

    She is a good layer, going up to 20 eggs +per clutch. Ive even had some days recently where she is laying 2 a day.

    She loves to swim, thats where i find her most, in her pool.

    she is a little noise maker though, does alot of cackling and such. She is very voicey on her opinions.

    Ducks are made to survive frozen waters and snow, so the only thing i worry about in the winter is re filling the duck pools. It might be a good idea to have, not exactly a filtration system, but something to keep the water moving so that when the ducks are not in it it does not freeze over.

    As for nesting, my gal loves to just bury herself in the hay. I stack it high in her hut so she can snuggle down into it. She is VERY good at hiding her eggs from me though.
     

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