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Feeding newly hatched ducks

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Thamnophis, May 26, 2010.

  1. Thamnophis

    Thamnophis Out Of The Brooder

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    Well our first experiment hatching duck eggs appears to be working [​IMG]
    But I realized I wasn't quite ready for them!

    I put some finely chopped spinach and some chick starter crumbles with them. They didn't seem to like the spinach and the crumbles seem big and too hard for them.

    Any suggestions? They do have a shallow water dish that they use.

    Joe
     
  2. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    Quote:The crumble is too big? Why are you mixing spinach with the crumble?
     
  3. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    Spinach is not good for them. It reduces the absorption of calcium. This is usually not an issue with adult ducks, but you should avoid it with ducklings. First dip their bill into water and make them swallow it. This will start their intestines. The food may be still to big and dry. I grind the feed and mix it with vitamin/electrolyte water into a thick soup. This will get you going for the first 3 days, and then they can deal with the crumble on their own. Also add a small 4 ounce jar of sand to their brooder at that time, this will help them to digest the food better. Vitamin/electrolyte water should be given the first week daily, after that once per week until they are 10 weeks old, after that once per month.
    Katharina
     
    Last edited: May 26, 2010
  4. Thamnophis

    Thamnophis Out Of The Brooder

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    Quote:Thanks - that sounds like a great alternative to the dry feed. I'll give it a go.
     
  5. yotetrapper

    yotetrapper Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Chick starter? Non medicated I hope?
     
  6. first egg

    first egg New Egg

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    chick starter feed doesny have the right nutrients. it will cause deformities and allergies in ducks ....
     
  7. gryeyes

    gryeyes Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers

    Chick starter, medicated or not, is perfectly fine for ducklings IF you add brewer's yeast to it, to raise the niacin level. Ducklings need more niacin than chicks. Chick starter is also a very fine crumble and easy for baby ducks to eat. I just add some Brewer's Yeast powder to their feed every day or so.

    Medicated chick started USED to be deadly to ducklings, but not for many, many years. Still the "warnings" to not use it for ducks persists. It's fine. Pellets need to be softened into a wet mash or ground up for very young ducklings.

    Definitely pass on the spinach, though. Until they're much older. And even then just give it as an occasional treat.
     
  8. MyBlackHen

    MyBlackHen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi - I am getting ducklings in a couple of weeks - they will be just about 3 weeks old when I get them. This will be our first time with ducklings - we have had chickens for a couple of years now. My local stores don't carry food just for ducks, so I will have to use chick starter/grower (16% protein) and then add the brewer's yeast. (Is there any chance that baker's yeast will work? I bake a lot of bread and have tons of baker's yeast on hand. Just a question ...)

    How much brewer's yeast do I add? Same amount as when you sprinkle in grit to baby chick's food - kind of like adding spices to a meal? Or much more than that?

    Also, the ducklings need grit - can I use the grit that I used for my baby chicks? Someone above mentioned sand, which is much finer than the grit I use for my chicks.

    Thanks for your help!
     
  9. first egg

    first egg New Egg

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    SERIOUSLY STOP SAYING CHICK START IS FINE FOR DUCK. IT IS NOT!!! ESPECIALLY IF ITS MEDICATED. chick starter is called CHICK for a reason. the protein and nutrients aren't the proper amount or quality for duck. they will develop deformities and get sick. feed them bugs, small sea shell, crush up earthqorms, make your own starter. for the first 2 weeks only. then use a feed or do whar I do, feeed them real food! organic hardboiled eggs, organic tomatos amd fresh greens. stick it in a food processor n let them feed wit plenty of water. if you use medicated chick feed your duck will not only develop bone, height, weight and allergy problems as well as bone issues but it tends to over eat. and if u overeat medicated chick food for duck I mean...do I really need to explain?? n if u people are just plain lazy to do research or even just feed them howw I suggest, which seems u r lazy, just buy DUCK STARTER FEED 20-22% get organic so it osnt genetically modified and u nor your pets will get cancee, tumors or other diseases n complications. seriously I know we live in America, the land where all information is free, available and resourceful but its 2012! use the info out there before the feds take it away! stop sleeping, its this country who are the guinea pigs and when u spread he says, she says without research or experience then u r no better then those banksters ruling u while u sleep. for your safety of course.:/
     
  10. MyBlackHen

    MyBlackHen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Wow, thanks for the rudest response I have ever seen on this blog. Anyone else want to be more helpful by telling me how much brewer's yeast can be added to chicken starter/grower to provide enough niacin? Also, it has to be brewer's yeast, not bakers yeast?
     

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