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Baby Pekin Questions from 1st Time Owner

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by farmgirlsomeday, Mar 11, 2014.

  1. farmgirlsomeday

    farmgirlsomeday Chirping

    Feb 23, 2014
    My baby Pekin, "Annie" is about one month old now - maybe 5 weeks and BOY is she growing fast! never seen a baby animal grow so quickly! She's being raised by a broody Silkie mama (chicken) along with have same-age Blue Copper Marans chick. Annie is very bonded to her adoptive mama and sister, which brings me to the first of several questions that I have for more experienced duck keepers.

    Because Annie is so attached to her little chicken family, she seems quite fearful of me, and she doesn't like me to let pet her or pick her up. Is there any way to try to get het more comfortable with me? Ivette to discover any treat that gets her too excited so I'm not sure that treat enticements will work. Any other ideas?

    Second question: although she's growing insanely fast, she's still totally covered in her soft yellow down. When will her "real" white feathers start appearing?

    Next question: I've tried to get her interested in splashing in some shallow water, but she seems to hate it, and she scrambles out as fast as she can waddle. Since it's supposed to be 75 degrees today, overset out a plastic pan that's about 1.5 feet wide by 2 feet wide in the yard with about 3-4 inches of water in it, and a rock in the middle for safety. I'm hoping that this way she will discover water on her own, but is there a better way to introduce her to getting into the water.

    And last but not least, I'm obviously to find out as soon as I can whether Annie is actually an Andy. I notice that when she peeps excitedly (and loudly!), the timbre of her voice is slightly raspy. Could this mean she's male? Or do I just have to wait until she starts actually emitting real quacks. When do ducklings stop squeaking and start quacking?

    Thanks so much for all the wise info for this first time duck keeper!:)
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2014

  2. Richb353

    Richb353 Chirping

    My Cayugas didn't warm up to me until about 4 months. The male will follow me around the yard and doesn't mind being picked up, but the female still keeps her distance. They see me everyday and most of the time I feed them by hand.

    Enjoy the down while you can, it won't be long before the adult feathers make their way in. If I remember correctly, the feathers came in when the ducks were almost, but not quite, full size.

    My ducks were full sized and would not go in their pool for all of last November. I couldn't make sense of it, why all of a sudden decide to avoid the water for over a month. I think what happened was when the ducks were in the pool, my Golden Retriever would splash on in there with them. Fun for the Golden, but scared the heck out of the ducks. I emptied the pool and sat it aside for a while, then a month later filled it back up. Eventually they started drinking, then swimming, and now they are back to being "normal" ducks.

    The Cayugas are chatty and make a lot of sound, but not all that loud. The female will let out a big loud "quack" when I startle her or chase her to pick her up. Otherwise, the pair are relatively calm and quiet. When they walk around it looks like they are deep in conversation. My wife swears its the female nagging the male.

  3. farmgirlsomeday

    farmgirlsomeday Chirping

    Feb 23, 2014
  4. HollyDuckFarmer

    HollyDuckFarmer Songster

    Jun 30, 2012
    LP Michigan
    I don't think my ducks have ever really warmed up to me-- they simply know that I am the one that brings food. I think feathers won't come in til 3-4 weeks, and then that will continue for a few weeks. I don't really allow mine to swim til they are fully feathered (unless a broody duck is doing the raising, then I will let her decide). 75'F might not be warm enough.
  5. ellieuki

    ellieuki In the Brooder

    Aug 11, 2013
    Every duck is unique to their own personality! My female peeped like crazy when she was a ducklings (even in a raspy tone) whereas my drake made little solitary peeps. I kinda figured out Louisa wasn't a Lowie fairly quick :)!

    Neither showed any interest into swimming until they were juveniles - just about that time they were getting their feathers in. Once they were about 2 months they started swimming - it wasn't as natural to them as I thought it would be.

    As for them letting me pick them up - neither imprinted on me which is really good for them - they imprinted on each other. They are ok with me inside their run and cleaning their coop/pool, but picking them up isn't cool with them. My drake is easier to give kisses and hugs but my Louisa is quick on her feet and wiggles. But they follow me around, talk to me, let me pet them, eat out of my hand, etc - they show love in many ways :) These two are my first ducks - hopefully not my last :) they are 7 months :) its insane how fast you fall in love with them.

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