Duck food? Duck friend? I'm so NEW!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by run_trip_fall, Sep 19, 2010.

  1. run_trip_fall

    run_trip_fall In the Brooder

    Sep 18, 2010
    Question No. 1 I am wondering if there is actually duck food, I went to my local grain and feed store and they had tons of chicken feed but none for ducks, I purchased a 7lb bag of the feed (NON MEDICATED) is this okay for my duck Gypsy? If need be i can post the nutritional value of the food.

    Question No. 2 Also Gypsy is my rescue duckling i found walking the streets of my neighborhood, Gypsy is a Black bellied whistling duck approximately 3 weeks old, do i need to get Gypsy a friend?

  2. Broodica

    Broodica Chirping

    Aug 20, 2010
    Cascade Foothills, WA
    The protein content seems to be the biggest issue. Storey's (the duck bible it seems), recommends 18-20% for the first 2 weeks and then 16-18% grower feed for weeks 2-7, 15-16% thereafter. It's also important that the feed is small enough for it to eat. I have an eight day difference between my older ducklings and my young ones, but had them on, FlockRaiser (Purina) 20%, only because they are all together and I wanted the young ones to have the higher percentage of protein for 2 weeks. There are huge differences of opinion on the % of protein issue. I decided to just follow Storey's for the most part. Next week I will bring them all down to 16-18%. I think Purina does have a duck food, but I have never been able to find it at any feed store near me.

    Also, have added Bragg's organic apple cider vinegar with the "mother" in it (1 tbsp/gallon), 100mg/gallon of crushed up niacin, and a vitamin, electrolyte and other stuff powder 1/4 tsp/gallon, in their water. And they get greens chopped up finely once a day and the occasional bug/worm.

    Personally, I would get your duckling a buddy. I got another duckling the same age and size as my solo after a week. She showed him/her who's boss for about 15 mins and then they were buddies. I mentioned the feather duster/mirror idea to you in the other thread, I think? I found that idea on another site and it seemed to work OK, but they are flock birds. I felt she needed another duckling to grow up with.

    Another edit: I forgot to mention grit! If you are feeding your new duckling greens, it must have grit and it should be chick grit so it's small enough. I mix mine in with their food (1cup/10cups of food) or you can put some on the side.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2010
  3. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Welcome, run_trip_fall, and thanks for the good information, Broodica!

    I want to ditto especially the niacin - while the protein percentages are up for debate (I followed Storey's and have eleven healthy six month old runners of the eleven day olds I started with), niacin deficiency can be serious.

    Once ducks are outside and able to forage quite a bit, niacin is less of a concern.

    Buddies are best for ducks, but if you don't mind the social pressure of being a duck's best friend, at his or her side 24/7, you could go solo. [​IMG]
  4. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Songster

    Aug 4, 2010
    San Diego
    I'm new when it comes to feed, but some of our stores have duck and duckling feed or starter, but I think Gypsy is too old for starter food from what I know.

    I certainly would get her a buddy if you don't have one already, that will make it easier for her when it's time for her to leave with the other whistling ducks as an adult. It doesn't have to be another whistling duck, though that would be ideal. A mallard might be a good companion as she will encounter that kind of duck in the wild, too.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2010
  5. run_trip_fall

    run_trip_fall In the Brooder

    Sep 18, 2010
    Hey guys thanks for all the great info, this site is amazing and I'm truly glad all of you guys are here to help!
    The chick food I bought is 20% protien and all natural.
    Also my parents are not so keen on keeping Gypsy inside and I think ducky diapers are silly, during the day gypsy is free range in the back yard and she loves to swim in the pool from what I've read on other sites the chlorine in the pool shouldn't harm her but I want to ask you guys and make sure!
    At night She sleeps in a cage we formerly used when breeding love birds, and I know its going to be too small for her as she grows but we have many racoons and opossums here in the suburbs and I dont want something to catch her off gaurd whilst sleeping.
  6. Boggy Bottom Bantams

    Boggy Bottom Bantams Crowing

    Mar 9, 2008
    Hahira, GA
    yes, to answer your question about is there duck feed. There is, but any gamebird ration will be fine, just follow the protein levels recommended above, they are perfect.
    Purina and Mazuri (same company) make specialized diets for everything on Earth. They have gamebird , waterfowl, seaduck diets, and so on.
    For treeducks, nothing super special is needed. They are way different than everyones common domestic breeds, but do well on a basic diet, 18% average feed is perfect at this age...

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