Ducks DO Learn!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Stacykins, Mar 29, 2012.

  1. Stacykins

    Stacykins Overrun With Chickens

    4,356
    201
    258
    Jan 19, 2011
    Escanaba, MI
    Part of the reason I got ducks is so that they could eat the huge amount of slugs and snails near the pond. Sort of a natural control for meningeal worms, of which those critters are an intermediate host for. You see, there are a huge number of deer in the area (the parasite doesn't harm deer, but if it gets in another ungulate like a goat or llama, it gets 'lost' and will often result in their death), so I bet the pathogen is here too. If I can use ducks to attempt to eliminate the intermediate host, it might help reduce the numbers of them.

    Anyway, so here I was thinking it was a lost cause to be able to teach my ducks where the pond was. For a few weeks I've been herding them back and forth (getting them to LEAVE the pond was always tricky, hah) in the morning and evening. I'd say the pond is about 100 meters away from where the coop (and food) is. They'd fill up on feed in the morning, get led to the pond, and not leave all day. By the evening time they were definitely ravenous! But they just weren't getting the idea to come back to the coop for food on their own.

    Until yesterday, when I decided to NOT lead them out to the pond when I opened up the coop to free range. I just let them do their ducky thing! By midday, they'd found the pond on their own. But would they come back? Turns out, they did! As the sun was setting, and I was gearing up to go GET them, they came trooping up the trail leading to the pond. It was amazing (and adorable!).

    This morning, they walked back out to the pond. Hoping they've got the idea and they come back out tonight, too!
     
  2. tweetysvoice

    tweetysvoice Chillin' With My Peeps

    945
    61
    143
    Dec 30, 2011
    Lawrence, KS
    My Coop
    Yay!!!!! It just took their mommy to learn what they should do and when they realized you'd left them to their own devises, they took upon themselves to make sure they did what they were supposed to! it's amazing how smart they are!
     
  3. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

    5,532
    184
    273
    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    It's duck group think. They follow their leader and you are the leader. So they were expecting you to lead.

    Ducks aren't stupid. They just think differently than humans do.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by