Duckling treats and living outside 24/7

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by CowgirlPenny, Feb 12, 2013.

  1. CowgirlPenny

    CowgirlPenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 17, 2011
    South East TN
    What do your ducks like to eat for treats?

    My ducklings have one more week on starter then I am moving them to grower (was thinking Flock Raiser?) But I had a few questions about treats.

    What do they like?

    What age can I start giving them things other than their feed?

    Last question.

    When can they go outside full time to their duck run? I am reading conflicting information on this. I don't let my pullets out without a light until around 6 weeks old but I have no clue with ducks.

    At what age will they be able to live out there all the time? Their run already has the start of an inground pool/pond for them so I want to be sure they will be old enough to not drown in the night.
     
  2. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    In the stickies at the top of the forum there is an extensive list of treats. Their age depends on what it is.

    Mine like tomatoes, sometimes, hard boiled and scrambled eggs and not a ton else. They would rather forage around.

    Like chickens, they need to be fully feathered at this time of year to go out. They can go out with a heat lamp (if needed) before then.

    I do have to ask. Your signature says that you have 2 female east indies and a male Pekin. Are you planning on housing them together?
     
  3. CowgirlPenny

    CowgirlPenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes I am. Everyone said to have more female than male together. Originally I only wanted to have 4 female black east indie but everyone said to get a male and I asked on a "duck" forum, several people told me it was ok with the breeds I chose. Why?

    They don't have to be out of the house before then. They are quite messy which I expected but they are fine in my office for another week or two, then they can move to the garage (with heat lamp) until feathered. I would feel weird about running a heat lamp to their run so far from my home anyway with a fire risk. I'd rather they not go out there until they can be without heat.
     
  4. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Completely correct about having more females. I'm very surprised that anyone would have said a Pekin drake was okay with East Indies ducks. He will be about 10lbs, they will be about 1.5 lbs. He will try to breed them and with the size difference... [​IMG]


    It looks like you are a little north of me so I'd wait until they were 6-8 weeks old to put them out full time. You also want to harden them off (like you would a plant [​IMG]) to the weather. You don't want to move them from comfy cozy to cold. A bit of time outiside during the day will help.

    I've had muscovy ducklings outside (they hatched in Dec) but they are with mom. They were stretching out in the sun in 28* temps at 3 weeks old [​IMG] But I think its also because mom is there and I had a heat lamp that they had access to in the coop for the first 4 weeks or so.
     
  5. CowgirlPenny

    CowgirlPenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 17, 2011
    South East TN
    Yes, I expected lots of daytime play just like I transition my pullets to living outside too. 6 to 8 weeks sounds perfect. End of March. Thanks!!

    Well, that makes me really sad about my Pekin. I really like him a lot but as I mentioned the ONLY reason I got ducks is because I have wanted black east indie ducks for about 4 years. My husband really wanted a pekin as there used to be a local "famous" one we'd feed at a duck park and he always loved that duck. I knew he would be much larger but I've had bantam hens with a standard rooster with no issues, so I figured it would be the same deal for ducks. :( Should I rehome him an get a smaller male?

    The treat chart is kind of confusing because only a few things have suggested ages. I think I'll just wait a bit for that. They seem extremely happy just making duck soup with their feed.
     
  6. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've never had bantams but I've heard horror stories and I know how rough my drakes (Muscovy) can be. I'd wait to make a decision until someone else chimes in. They are still young so you have time. You could also think about getting him some girls of his own but I don't know if you have the space. Ducks will be fine without a drake.

    For treats, I've always started off with greens, usually romaine, chopped up in tiny bits and placed in some water. I also would thaw peas and squeeze the "meat" of the pea out of the shell and give them that. Remember that if you are giving things other than commercial feed they'll need grit to be able to digest it.
     
  7. TLWR

    TLWR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just chopped things up small for the ducks when they were little. Now as adults, I just split it in half and let them do the rest.
    Peas, tiny chopped tomatoes, diced up most anything on the treat list.
     
  8. CowgirlPenny

    CowgirlPenny Chillin' With My Peeps

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    South East TN
    Could you use pea baby food? My baby has never liked puree baby food so I have a ton of that. Would be nice to find a use for it.

    I won't make any permanent decisions just yet. Regardless he can't go right now with no feathers and such. I would feel awful if someone just tried to stick him outside so I'll wait a while. We have plenty of grit from our hens (as they seem to just prefer sand) so I'll be sure to put some out when they start eating things other than their feed.
     
  9. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't see why they couldn't eat baby food. I'd just make sure it doesn't have any weird additives ( I wouldn't think baby food would [​IMG]) Just go slowly with any new foods. A little bit at a time.
     

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