Do I FORCE them inside their duck house or not?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Nebraskagirl, Nov 12, 2013.

  1. Nebraskagirl

    Nebraskagirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 12, 2012
    We live in Nebraska and I have three Welsh Harlequin ducks (all fully feathered.) I have a wooden coop with ventilation and used it last year during the cold months. I would make them go inside and lock the box at night (it has alfalfa hay as bedding with no water or food inside the actual box.) The actual pen is enclosed from all sides including the top and it has three strings of electric fencing around it. This summer I left the door to the box open so if they wanted to go inside they could but closed the door to the pen so they would be secure at night. BUT this morning it was 10 degrees outside and they were outside their box (I did not lock them inside last night) and they have a heated waterer. When it gets this cold at night (and it will only get colder!) do I MAKE them go inside their box, or do I let them decide?
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I would start reading them treats just before sundown in their box. What I mean is, don't leave food in there, I mean give them some treats that they will eat up, but give them in the box. I think that will help them develop the habit of going in the box at sundown (or near that time, depending on your schedule).

    In my experience, not all ducks do what is best for themselves. And as my mom said, "you can draw more flies with honey than with vinegar."
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2013
    1 person likes this.
  3. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    IF the pen is pred secure i wouldn't worry about it, i don't have anything like that, so mine must be forced into housing at night.
    1 person likes this.
  4. Nebraskagirl

    Nebraskagirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 12, 2012
    Thanks guys. I was just concerned about them not doing the right thing and being frozen in the morning. Hubby says they are smart enough to go in if it gets too cold. I did find them coming out of their box this morning when I arrived with feed, but I thought it might be better if that door was shut at night to provide more warmth.
  5. arnaudgf

    arnaudgf Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 25, 2013
    If you want the door closed, you can check on them later in the evening. I find that ours go in by themselves if we get home later than usual (it's hard to get home before dark in the winter)

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