Can inside ducks be put back outside during the winter?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by dianaross77, Jan 16, 2011.

  1. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    I had this posted in a different thread but wasn't getting any answers, so I thought I'd start a new one.

    So I have a potentially silly question. I have 2 ducks that I got from someone in November. They were hatched in the spring of 2010. We weren't ready for them to go straight outside right away so we told the lady we got them from that we would be putting them in a kennel in the basement for a few weeks. I was told that we had to keep them in for the whole winter because they would lose their "winter coats." Is that true? Or can I put the kennel outside and tarp the sides as a windbreak and build them a 3 sided straw shelter? I would really like to get them out of the house so they can stop yelling at me every time I walk past the basement stairs! And also so they can make a mess in their water and swim in their mixing tub.
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2011
  2. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
  3. FunnyBunnies12

    FunnyBunnies12 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I responded and I to am trying to figure this out as well since my ducklings are 12wks old + and I'm wanting to get mine outside sooner rather then later in the season. But if it's to be not until March, or April then so be it.
  4. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    Sure hope we get an answer.
  5. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

    Jan 11, 2010
    If they are fully feathered- and fully grown there is no reason why they cant go outside. You would need to make the transition slowly so they can acclimatise to the cooler conditions though. Leave them outside during the day only for a week- then each night leave them a little longer monitoring how they are coping. After another week- as long as you think they are coping they can be left outside at night as long as they are provided with proper shelter from wind and rain.
  6. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    Quote:I'm glad to hear that. So what would be the signs they aren't coping well? Besides shivering, is there anything else I should know? How cold does it get in austrailia? Here its been about 15 degrees at night.

    Eta: thanks for you help. I was starting to wonder if I was gonna get an answer.
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2011
  7. Denninmi

    Denninmi Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2009
    Personally, I'd be really hesitant to put them out in these conditions, especially given the forecast for later in week for southern Michigan, highs in the teens and lows around 0. It's kind of like a person who tans -- while they may be fine in the summer, if they were to go out first thing in the spring on that first warm, sunny day and lay out there for hours, they'd pay the price.

    I think if you made it half way through January, I'd just keep them inside for the next roughly 8 weeks. If we have nicer days, put them out, but watch them and make sure they're not cold. Aside from shivering, watch for them to seek out sheltered corners and hunch down, draw in their feet, and fluff out a a sign they're cold. Of course, that also could just mean nap time.

    In future years, as long as they become used to the cold gradually by being outside during the normal seasonal transition, it won't be a problem.
  8. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    Thanks denninmi. You're right. It is about to get really cold here. I want them out of the house but don't want to kill them! We are looking into heating the garage and putting their pen out there. Then we can control the temperature drops. Right now they are at 70 degrees. They are making quite a bit of dust and only 1 wall made of paneling separates them from the furnace. Every time I go down there, my nose gets really itchy too.

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