Duck Behavior Question!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by lauriemae15, Dec 4, 2012.

  1. lauriemae15

    lauriemae15 Out Of The Brooder

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    We rescued a pair of adult ducks a few weeks ago and are trying to learn what all their little behaviors mean. They are not very tame so we try to hold and interact with them as much as we can. The male really hates when I pick up his girlfriend lol!

    We gave them a nice little tub of water to splash around in but they won't go near it! I put the female in it and she sat there for a few seconds looking at me like, "what is wrong with you?" and then she quickly got out. Abnormal ducks?

    The one thing I am really curious about, is when I stroke the female duck's neck, she kind of nibbles up my arm and even sticks her head up my sleeve! It tickles. I am just wondering what exactly this means; is it a friendly gesture, or a "go away" gesture, or is she just foraging to see if I have any bugs on me?? [​IMG]


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  2. furbabymum

    furbabymum Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My ducks didn't like being put in the water when they were new. Now they go hide out in the pond to escape my evil walking byness. Really though, panic stricken constantly I swear.

    Anyway, I don't treat mine like pets so I've got nothing else for ya. When they get used to things I'm sure they'll go to the water voluntarily.
     
  3. rekkas peeps

    rekkas peeps Chillin' With My Peeps

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    my Cayuga's LOVE the water but it took some time for them to get to that point. 1 of them loves to be held and does the nibble thing but I take it as affection with that one while her counterpart hates being handled and quacks and thrashes when you get her. good luck and keep us posted
     
  4. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    Since they are new, they are probably finding everything frightening... they will likely get used to the water in time. I personally don't feel ducks are pickup animals at the core they are prey animals so being held is scary. Now, i can if i have to grab my birds, this is needed in case of them needing care but i don't make a general habit of trying to hold/grab them.

    Food is a good way to get ducks to know you/trust you, peas... BOSS etc...

    Lovely ducks!
     
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2012
  5. AZCowboy

    AZCowboy Out Of The Brooder

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    Those look like Saxony ducks. I have some and they do the same thing with the putting there beal up your sleeve. They should calm down! :D
     
  6. lauriemae15

    lauriemae15 Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 28, 2012
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    Thanks everyone! Its getting too cold here to leave the tub of water out, so hopefully they will enjoy it next spring instead.

    I think they are getting used to things here, they cuddle together in their nest inside the dog house and they love to make mud puddles by their water dish.

    We still have them separated from our chickens since the chickens try to gang up on them. The male has a limp because he was attacked by a hawk (which is why we rescued them) so the female defends him against the chickens. She really hisses loud!

    We are really enjoying watching them and their cute little behaviors, especially when they wiggle their little butts! [​IMG]
     
  7. galgo98

    galgo98 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Congrats on adopting ducks! You will love them! [​IMG]
    I've found the quickest way to get them to relax is following a routine. Keep everything the same in their pen, and try to follow a routine when entering and exiting. Even something like putting the food dish in a different corner can rock their world for several days!! I also talk to them as I approach the pen. They all stay quiet until they hear my voice and then they give me the full run down of the nights events! And of course, treats!!! I always have treats (dried mealworms, peas, other veggies) with me when I approach them also! Once they are used to the treats, you can throw some into their pool to help encourage them to like their pool.
    Have fun!!!
     
  8. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    They look like my buff ducks. Some ducks are better about being touched by humans than others. Each has his or her own personality. You have been given some good pointers here.

    The ducks need to be able to wash their entire heads even if they don't have swimming water. I find a large steep-sided stew pot works well. They can splash a little, but cannot overturn it, and they can dip their heads all the way in. This helps avoid serious eye, sinus and ear infections.
     
  9. lauriemae15

    lauriemae15 Out Of The Brooder

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    Nov 28, 2012
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    Thanks! We have a large heated dog bowl for water right now since its so cold here. They love to shove their whole head in and then splash water on the ground and dabble in the mud. They don't really seem to mind being held or petted, its just the one who wasn't picked up who has the problem lol. When I come outside they come out of their house to see what I am doing and then all the sudden they just quack like crazy for no reason, its so funny!

    Should we supply grit/oyster shells for the ducks like we do for the chickens?

    Thanks!!
     
  10. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    I do have free choice oyster shell here but that is so my girls get the extra calcium as i use a flock raiser no layer feed. I have never given the ducks grit but they have access to 1/3 acre penned area and can fly out to go where they want on the property(were rural so that is acres)
     

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