Are my ducks ready for the great outdoors? how do I prepare?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by SqueakyRoseShalom, May 16, 2011.

  1. SqueakyRoseShalom

    SqueakyRoseShalom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 17, 2011
    Hello All!
    My Pekin ducks are now 3 weeks old and their feathers are finally coming in![​IMG] So I have lots of questions...
    1. I can put them outside now, right?[​IMG]
    2. How do I ensure that they will sleep in the large doghouse that I have for them?
    3. If I feed them every day, they will stay in the vicinity of my backyard and retention pond, right?
    4. Do I need to clip their wings to prevent them from flying away? If so, how, since there are not yet feathers on their wings?
    5. I am creating a web of fishing line over the retention pond, with strips of duck tape folded over the line in random places so that the line is more visible, to discourage hawks, eagles, and owls from swooping in to hunt our ducks. Anything else that i should be doing?
    6. I am going to close the door to the duck (dog) house every night to ward off racoons, opossums, and foxes, unless someone tells me that this is not necessary, but I'm assuming that it is. Does this mean that I need to provide food and water inside the duck house?
    7. How do I get my ducks into the duck house in the evening?

    Any other information that you can offer is greatly appreciated![​IMG]

    here is a picture of the feathers coming in: (they are ready for the great outdoors, right?)
    [​IMG]
     
  2. DurhamDuck

    DurhamDuck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 26, 2011
    Durham, Connecticut
    1) They shouldn't be outside until they are fully feathered, unless you've got a heatlamp in the duckhouse for them.
    2) keep them in a fenced in enclosure so predators can't get them while they sleep.
    3) Yes, because Pekin ducks can't fly.
    4) Again, Pekin ducks can not fly so there is no need to clip them.
    5) Sounds like a good plan.
    6) Ducks need water 24/7 and I would always leave them food too.
    7) LOL...now that's the $100,000 question!! I suggest giving them treats ONLY at night when they go inside. After a few times of you chasing them in, they should get the hang of it. Also, we use a "treat bucket" when ever our ducks or goslings see the "treat bucket" they come running. Only use this bucket for good treats and they will quickly learn to run TOWARD the you whenever you're holding the "treat bucket".

    Good luck!!
     
  3. DuckDuckDuckGoose

    DuckDuckDuckGoose Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 11, 2011
    The Great Northwest
    Quote:Hi SqeakyRoseShalom- NO your ducks are not ready to go outside yet. Wait another week or 2.
    Start taking them on little field trips outside to graze and then bring them back in, so they can get used to the vicinity of your backyard. They are too young just to let them in the retention pond by themselves because they do not have the preen oil they need to be waterproof, so they can get water logged and drown.
    As far as the web of fishing line that is ok, you don't have t put duck tape on the fishing line because Hawks, Eagles,Falcon etc. can see the fishing line and will not attack through it, so not duck tape needed.
    Pekin ducks cannot fly because they are too heavy, so you do NOT need to clip their wings.
    To get your ducks back in just herd them or offer a favorite treat. when they are older they will know who feeds them and will come in on their own to eat.

    But again, THEY ARE TOOO YOUNG TO GO OUT RIGHT NOW:)
    These are my 7wk old pekins-
    [​IMG]
     
  4. SqueakyRoseShalom

    SqueakyRoseShalom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 17, 2011
    Quote:good info- thank you! i'm a little disappointed that they are not ready to go outside yet because they require sooooo much care, but alas! such is life:). ok, so, what are good treats? i may as well start the treat-bucket-training now, right?
    and thank you DurhamDuck and The Great Northwest for responding!
     
  5. fifenashia

    fifenashia Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 15, 2011
    Eastern Kentucky
    Ducks from what I have seen with my own, and read on forums LOVE WORMS (in all stages), hard boiled eggs mashed up, romaine lettuce, mashed potatoes (cold), peas, and I have heard some oatmeal and yogurt but mine disagrees with that particular statement.

    Hope this helps!
     
  6. SqueakyRoseShalom

    SqueakyRoseShalom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 17, 2011
    Quote:Hmm it just occurred to me that perhaps I should have mentioned that we reside in southern Florida. In May the highs are in the high 80's and the low's in the 70's and high 60's. Does this make a difference as to when I can move them outside?
     
  7. RaZ

    RaZ Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Caseville, MI
    My 5 Pekins have been outside for almost 3 weeks now, they are ~5 weeks old. They love being in the yard, swimming in their pool and foraging for bugs and such. They overnight in a coop with a heat lamp.

    Today was only 45'F and rainy and the ducks spent a lot of time in the pool and the mud puddles. But they still found the time to eat a cup of yogurt.
     
  8. DuckDuckDuckGoose

    DuckDuckDuckGoose Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 11, 2011
    The Great Northwest
    Quote:good info- thank you! i'm a little disappointed that they are not ready to go outside yet because they require sooooo much care, but alas! such is life:). ok, so, what are good treats? i may as well start the treat-bucket-training now, right?
    and thank you DurhamDuck and The Great Northwest for responding!

    Your welcome=The great northwest is where im from My Name I use on here is DuckDuckDuckGoose. or DDDG. [​IMG]
    As far a good treats for ducks sweet peas. that is all I have used so far as far as treats.
    Just try to enjoy this time with your lil duckies because they grow up in a minute. I know its alot of work, but what you get from it is so worth it! and u get what you give remember.[​IMG]
    I am with ya though, I feel like im cleaning up turds every second of the day unless we are outside grazing:)
    HANG IN THERE SRS.
    T.
     
  9. DuckDuckDuckGoose

    DuckDuckDuckGoose Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 11, 2011
    The Great Northwest
    Quote:Hmm it just occurred to me that perhaps I should have mentioned that we reside in southern Florida. In May the highs are in the high 80's and the low's in the 70's and high 60's. Does this make a difference as to when I can move them outside?

    SRS- It sounds warm enough for them, so probably wouldnt need to heat them. If you do decide to put them out you should make sure you give them a place they can go for protection and locked up over night. Just wanna add that your ducks will be a easy lunch for alot of different predators because they are so young and inexperienced. (didnt u say the were only 2wks old?)
    T.
     
  10. DurhamDuck

    DurhamDuck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 26, 2011
    Durham, Connecticut
    Quote:good info- thank you! i'm a little disappointed that they are not ready to go outside yet because they require sooooo much care, but alas! such is life:). ok, so, what are good treats? i may as well start the treat-bucket-training now, right?
    and thank you DurhamDuck and The Great Northwest for responding!

    You're welcome. I buy 7 bags of frozen peas a week ($1 each at StopNShop here). I give them half a bag in the morning and the other half at night. It's like a shark feeding frenzy! They ADORE them. We also give them dandelion leaves, romaine lettuce, chopped small strawberries (with the leaves still on), chopped grapes and I let them pick at the left over watermelon rind (the love it).
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2011

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