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Curing the food snobs

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by allergymama, Oct 28, 2014.

  1. allergymama

    allergymama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I seem to have a whole flock of food snobs. Every post I've read talks about how ducks love treats. Mine won't eat anything I give them. They get feed at night and they free range during the day, and I am worried that when winter hits (Michigan...not much food when free ranging when there is 18" of snow on the ground and the pond is frozen over) they won't eat anything but feed. I've tried all different kinds of organic greens, fruits, and yes, peas that everyone says their ducks love. A nibble here or there, but no enthusiasm and now I have little rotting piles of vegetable material all over my yard. I've tried throwing it in the pond, floating it in their water dishes, throwing it on top of the feed (yes, they actually pushed it out of the way!), and laying it where they hang out during the day. Thoughts, ideas, opinions? TIA
     
  2. smonkeySK

    smonkeySK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Different ducks: different treats!
    Mine go for mealworm and watercress.
    Peas and green beans are enjoyed also. - serving peas in warm water with ACV is a winter treat that the ducks love - but they aren't as keen if you just tip them on the floor. So even presentation can play a role!
    Sometimes they'll eat lambs lettuce, sometimes they won't!
    However they don't like carrots, tomatoes, parsnips or strawberries at all.

    My chickens like everything the ducks like - but they also enjoy yogurt of which my ducks aren't big fans.
    They all enjoy a bit of scrambled egg on occasion too.

    I have friends whose birds will eat anything put in front of them - pasta, cooked potato, chicken (!), bacon, basically any leftovers from mealtimes!

    Now if you read around, there are plenty of folk here whose ducks love tomatoes and carrots and many other things that mine will turn their noses up at...

    All ducks are different and a treat for one duck is a disappointment for another!
    I think a lot of it is getting them to try as many safe food types as possible while they are still young and impressionable :)

    There'll be something that floats their boat - you just have to find out what it is!!
     
  3. Jessica89

    Jessica89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mine love mealworms and lettuce!

    I made some scrambled egg for them earlier.. they didn't like that!
     
  4. allergymama

    allergymama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh yeah, I forgot I tried live and dried mealworms, too. Maybe I didn't introduce enough new stuff to them early on?

    Do you think that maybe when the "forage" is covered by snow they won't be so picky?
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2014
  5. Rachele anne

    Rachele anne Chillin' With My Peeps

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    mine love tomatoes lol but they like every thing I give them
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2014
  6. smonkeySK

    smonkeySK Chillin' With My Peeps

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    wigan uk
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/242460/the-ultimate-list-of-duck-treats-and-supplements

    This is the best list of goodies to try that I've seen.
    It's like I said though; all ducks are different, and just like us humies they can decide any day at random that they don't fancy this or that!
    Do they have access to live plants and/or grass? They could be getting their greens without your knowledge and help - obviously if they are confined to a smallish run then you'd probably know all about it from the decimation!

    Snow may get them trying your offerings due to lack of choice, but you'll have to wait for bad weather to hit before you find out - you'll be the first duck owner I know of who is itching for the big freeze to hit!
    As I already stated; my lot prefer peas or mixed veg in warm water rather than watercress during the winter months. But like watercress over peas/mixed veg (served warm or cold) during the warmer periods.
    So their tastes will likely change seasonally anyway.

    Have you tried hanging treats up - so the ducks have to reach and investigate. My birds love playing with my tassles and laces, so plants like dandelions and watercress could be tied up and hung with a few trailing ends to pique their interest.
     
  7. HawktreeFarm

    HawktreeFarm New Egg

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    My Ducks LOVE tomatoes. Over the summer I'd throw them the sub par tomatoes from the garden and they would go nuts! The bigger and juicer they were the more they loved them.
     
  8. allergymama

    allergymama Chillin' With My Peeps

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    LOL...Yes, indeed, I may be the only one looking forward to the big freeze...and I hate cold weather. [​IMG] I will try tying some treats up to dangle once we get a freeze. Maybe it is that they are just so used to foraging and there is so much available (they wander on our 10 acres and some of the neighbors) still.

    Thanks for all the help everyone! This place is so helpful!
     

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