Another Question

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by cazoo, Jan 22, 2010.

  1. cazoo

    cazoo Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 28, 2009
    We ordered three ducklings from Metzers. They are due to ship on February 8th. We live in Kentucky in what is considered the Louisville Metro area, although not in Jefferson County, so it will be cold here for awhile yet. I know ducks do well in the cold, but I am concerned how the ducklings will do in the cold. We plan on keeping them in a large dog kenel in our garage at first, and we will provide a heat source. How long so we need to keep them in garage? Do I need to wait until they have their feathers, or can they go out to the aviary before then? The duck house is heated, but they are out and about during the day.

    Once agian, thanks in advance!
  2. Goat_Walker

    Goat_Walker I Am THE Crazy Duck Lady

    Jul 9, 2008
    I dont let my ducks out into the cold till they have most if not all their adult feathers.
  3. cazoo

    cazoo Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 28, 2009
    Thanks Goat_Walker. That is what I thought. I was just making sure.

    Our first ducks lived in our garage for the first four to five months we had them. It took me that long to figure out the design of the aviary, and to build it. It looks like the dog kennel and wading pool for our new arrivals for a while!
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    The short answer is that ducklings do not do well in the cold - it could kill them.

    Ducklings need to be consistently nice and warm the first several weeks of their lives. Adult ducks are cold hardy, but ducklings need someplace nice and warm from hatching to about 8 weeks, when they are fully feathered.

    Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks recommends keeping the ducklings in a brooder, dry, on clean dry bedding, out of drafts and around 90 degrees the first week, dropping about five degrees a week for the next six to eight weeks, down to around 50. The heat source needs to be well away from them to avoid burns, and away from anything flammable to avoid fires.

    They need to be watched a bit, as they need a constant supply of clean water that they cannot get into. If they get wet and catch a chill, it could be curtains for the ducklings.

    I have to smile remembering the "duckling in a bottle" thread. You may want to look for that one [​IMG]
    It reminded me how much trouble a duckling can get itself into, in a short time.

    They also need starter feed, nonmedicated.

    Enjoy the little ones! Once you get them through their ducklinghood healthy, you should be blessed with hardy critters.
  5. cazoo

    cazoo Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 28, 2009
    Thank you Amiga,

    Okay, the kennel is large. What we used before was wood shavings (the same as we use for our horses); however we use straw in both of our duck houses now. They seem to like to "nest" in it better. Anyway, the heat source is a ceramic heater. It will be far enough not to have to worry about fire or burning the duckings. We also will wrap the kennel on three sides and top to help keep the warm. We'll put a duck fountian for water and a poultry feeding tray for food. The wet and "dirty" shavings are reomoved daily.

    Now, we got our first ducklings in April, so the weather was not as cold nor did it last long. That is also a concern. Does anyone know how old the ducklings will be when they ship for metzers? So, I can gauge what I need to do to meet their environmental temperature needs.

    Last edited: Jan 23, 2010

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