Bathing Ducks / Ducklings

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by RavenClawPekin6, Jan 7, 2015.

  1. RavenClawPekin6

    RavenClawPekin6 Chirping

    Jan 5, 2015
    Kilkenny, Ireland
    I'm getting 2 Pekin Ducklings in March. I heard that ducks get messy enough, so I was wondering if it would be a good idea to give them a bath / wash?
    And if so, what should I use to clean them (shampoo, bar of soap, etc), how should I dry them (will I use a low-speed hairdryer to dry them or towels?) and how long should they spend in the bath before getting cold?
  2. Richb353

    Richb353 Chirping

    Just sit a clean tub of water down, step back, and enjoy the show. After splashing around the pool, ducks preen for a while.

    Until I have all the material to build a pond, the 21 ducks in my flock have to use a 5' round kiddie pool. I re-fill it every two days or less. They can tell when its dirty, but dive right in for party time when the water is fresh.

    Finally, ducks have natural oils that they coat themselves in when they preen. Hence the saying "like water off a ducks back". It's one of the ways they insulate and waterproof themselves, so you don't want to take that away. Where you do want to use a towel is for ducklings. They won't have the protection and buoyancy from feathers and are vulnerable to temperature and drowning. So after your ducklings first few closely supervised trip to the pool, bathtub, etc, you may want to towel them mostly dry and have a heat lamp ready for them to keep warm.

    Pool or bathtub, I always provided an "island" for the ducklings to climb on in case they got tired.

    1 person likes this.
  3. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Good all-around response from Rich.

    I let my littles bathe (no soap) from the time they were 2 days old. At first in a cake pan with an inch and a half of water the same temperature (90F) as the brooder. Any who did not preen immediately after bath were toweled off with a dry wash cloth.

    I kept an eye on them the entire time in the water - mine tuckered out generally after five or ten minutes the first week, then as they grew, they got stronger.

    But no unsupervised water time till they were fully feathered.

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