Duck Timeline- Many Questions


In the Brooder
Apr 11, 2017

We finished making our duck area outside last night and are looking into getting ducks ASAP! We wanted to get adult ducks so we could skip the brooding process but realized that we want the ducks to be friendly so figured we should start with ducklings. I have been trying to do research and looking on pinterest for answers but thought I would reach out on here too!

1) What age do you put the ducklings outside?
2) How are the increments of changing the temperature of the heat lamp?
3) Do you have water and food 24/7 for them?
4) I am gone for 7 hours of the day are they going to be okay that long?
5) How often do you let them swim in your tub/sink?
6) If I end up with a drake and a hen can I still eat the eggs if I pick them up everyday?


6 Years
Jul 26, 2016
Upper Peninsula, MI
I just got ducks last year and two more this year, be careful they are addicting. I have drakes and ducks, I collect once a day around 9:00am. You can eat them no problem. If you order from Metzer you can have the ducklings sexed. They were 100% correct with all of mine and everyone arrived alive and well. I live pretty far from any major airport too.

It depends on your weather for putting them outside permanently. Once they are fully feathered they are good to go, usually 4-6 weeks. They can go outside before on nicer days, but not too windy.

Swim them as often as you like. Not too long at first, they have no oil on their down and can chill and drown quickly. Most people wait until 2 weeks old, especially if you're a first timer. Dry them with a towel and pop them back into their warm brooder.

Mine used their heater for maybe a week, then were never under it again. Ducks aren't as sensitive as chicks I guess as long as there are no drafts and the room is warm. Mine were in the basement. You certainly don't have to lower the temp by one degree every day like it says for brooders. As long as they have a warm place and a way to be out of the heat and no drafts they will be fine.

They need food and water at all times while they are small, once they are big, no. You don't want any food or water in the coop, it will be a nightmare. Keep it out in the run. Ducks don't roost and won't sleep all night either. Muscovy ducks might roost, I don't have any experience with them.

I use a cookie sheet with 2 puppy pads on it to hold their food and water in the brooder. It really helps contain the wet mess. Their water is in a jug with a hole cut out so they can dunk their bill and face, but not go swimming. I lost a duckling from the first batch from letting them use a regular chick waterer and she got soaked and cold overnight and died the next morning.

Hope that advice from another fairly noob duck owner helps

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