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Ducks per square foot.

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by rubberduckies, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. rubberduckies

    rubberduckies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My duck house is almost complete. It's about 3.5x5 and I'll have an enclosure that's about 10x10. I have 5 ducks right now but if I decided to add more to the flock how many more could I add with that amount of space? How many square feet should I have per duck (inside and out)?
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    From Storey's Guide

    medium to large sized ducks
    for night only, at least 2.5 to 4 sf per bird

    if any chance of keeping them in continuously during severe weather, minimum 6 to 8 sf.

    for the duck yard, minimum 10 to 25 sf per duck, shade area, slope with good drainage, no stagnant waterholes

    ------

    I have about 100 square feet for 13 small ducks - runners and buffs. The day pen is about 190 square feet, including the covered veranda.

    By the way.... Hi! [​IMG]Congratulations on your duck house progress! Sometimes I get so focused on the information, I forget to say hello.
     
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2013
  3. Carcajou

    Carcajou Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What kind of ducks do you have? You should have 2-6 sq ft per bird (depending on their size) for nighttime only housing. Will you let your ducks free range during the day? If not, do you have room to have a larger enclosure? 10 x 10 is quite small for five ducks to stay in all day long. It should be at least twice that size. What are you planning for water for them?
     
  4. rubberduckies

    rubberduckies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Lol. Hey, Amiga! I REALLY need to get that book! That's going to be my goal for this week. Thanks for the info. I plan to have the enclosure attached to the house and have the whole thing on wheels. They'll have a hard plastic kiddy pool. I plan to move the house/enclosure and refill the pool at least once a week. That way they'll always have a fresh area to forage in. I'm going to make the enclosure as big as I can while keeping it mobile. We are in a rental home right now so I don't want to do anything to permanent. But my SO should be retiring from the military in a few more years and then we'll be in our permanent home. Oh, how I cannot wait for that! I have 2 Runners, 2 Rouens, and 1 Pekin. If I do add more it won't be for another 6-12 months and I would probably only add a couple runners or WH. I just wanted to get an idea of what I could do with the space I have. I'm trying to go with the biggest possible space I can get. Because ducks are like Doritos... You can't just have a handful. Lol. I don't feel comfortable with them free ranging. We have dogs that run around here sometimes and I don't know that they wouldn't attack the ducks. I have about an acre in the back completely fenced in but that's where my bloodhound is. He's a huge baby. And sometimes when he plays he thinks he's a tiny puppy when really he's about 125lbs. So even though I know he would never hurt anything on purpose I'm not sure that it would be safe to let them share a space with him.
     
  5. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    rubberduckies, you are so far ahead of the curve with your plans!

    I just heard an interview with Joel Salatin this morning, saying that mobile infrastructure is the way to go with livestock. And this man has thousands of animals at Polyface farm. Don't think feedlot, this guy spoils 'em all.

    The number of ducks we have and the lay of our land do not make for easy mobile shelter, though. So we have multiple shelters! And planning more! [​IMG] I was grateful beyond words when my beloved suggested we build day pens in the back yard as well. [​IMG]

    Hawks are getting bold around here. No disasters yet, but I know they are just waiting for their opportunity. Since I am not perfect, I know it could happen in spite of my cautions. So sturdy covered pens in the back will be a big help.
     
  6. rubberduckies

    rubberduckies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hawks! I meant to say that was one of the other reasons I don't want them to free range. We have lots of hawks around here. Their enclosure will have a roof. Half hardware cloth, half tin roof. It will have 2 or 4 (depending on the size I end up with) sections that open like big doors. It won't be tall enough for me to stand up in, so with the "roof doors" and a small side door I'll be able to go in and clean their pool and refill food and water. Ahhh! I can't wait to see all my plans finished! I'm pretty sure the duckies are going to love it. :)
     
  7. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    I have a hatch door section for the day pen so that a taller person (as in, taller than 3 feet) can stand up and reach just about all of the day pen with a rake or shovel. I rarely use it. I am 5'3" (used to be 5'4"[​IMG]) and can duck walk easily to do maintenance or play with the ducks.
     
  8. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'd say that right now you are at your size limit for the number of ducks that you have and thats only if they are never in there during the day. If you want to add more, you will need to increase both house and outside space. Your plan sounds good for the house but it just isn't enough space for more. You only have 17.5 sq ft of indoor space. Remember the less space per duck, the more the mess is, indoors and out.
     
  9. rubberduckies

    rubberduckies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    jdywntr, you make a good point about the mess. We'll have a lot more space when we move and there are no immediate plans to add more ducks. I'm happy with my 5 right now. If I do add more before we move I think it would be pretty easy to add on to. Thanks for all the advice!
     
  10. amandajb7

    amandajb7 New Egg

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    Ok...so help me with the math here :)
    If my duck house is currently 12x14, I definitely could house 5 Pekins and 3 Khaki Campbells, right? And then some...!
    We have a farm, so ours have free range of 4 acres of yard space every day, including a dugout for swimming.
    They also have their own 50x30 yard if the weather sucks and I don't feel like having them hide under the deck in a snowstorm...
     

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