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Building house for Runners - nesting box ??

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by happydog, Jun 20, 2010.

  1. happydog

    happydog Songster

    Nov 22, 2009
    Western NC
    I have 10 Indian Runners. I have 6 females and 4 that are straight runs. They're too icky to keep in the brooder box much longer so I'm working on their house. What size nesting boxes will they need? My duck book is totally useless, saying "some ducks nest on the ground, some should have nests at least 20 inches off the ground."

    Also, what is the ratio of nest boxes to ducks?

  2. bock

    bock Songster

    Oct 10, 2008
    Northern CA
    I would reccomend Dave Hollerhead's book....it's SO great. [​IMG]
  3. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Songster

    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    Nest boxes should be about 18 inches square, on the ground but with plenty of straw in the bottom. They will dig down deep to lay the eggs, so if you don't want muddy eggs, lay that straw THICK--like 8-12 inches. I have three boxes for 8 hens, but they generally only use two of them. Occasionally I'll find eggs in the third, so I would say that one box for every three hens is a good ratio. Also, be sure to put a golf ball in each nest to show them what it's for. Otherwise they'll choose their own spot and you may not like it, lol.

    But you needn't worry about nest boxes just yet--it will be five months or so before they'll start laying, and a while after that before they think to use a nest box. Right now you should be worrying primarily about predator protection, and weather-proofing if you're going to have babies out there.

    Have fun!
  4. crj

    crj Songster

    Dec 17, 2009
    Rocky Point, NC
    We have 6 Runners and my wife built a 4x5 duck box with 2 opening doors on the front (full size). Inside for nest boxes we use 2 plastic soda cases(16x24 the size that hold 24 bottles). Both filled with hay. The runners are sleeping in them at night I think. I know that they put themselves up at dark and wait for the wife to close the door and lock them in.
  5. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners 8 Years

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    My eleven runners are in a 4' x 8' house, and several days ago started making their own nest with shavings (they were sixteen weeks at that point). I put some straw in there today, to give them something to work with. A friend will be sending me a couple of large wooden cheese boxes (the kind cheese wheels come in) for nest boxes. We can give that a try.

    Meanwhile, someone gave us an egg a few days ago, so technically at four months someone began laying. I reckon it will be days or even weeks before everyone starts up.

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