Feeding

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by percyj, Jul 10, 2010.

  1. percyj

    percyj Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 20, 2010
    Ok I am getting my first ducks as some of u may know, they are 5 female welsh harlequins and I was wondering, can I have a feeding schedule for them? (eg. When to end starter, grower, and what to feed as an adult.) I'm raising them 4 their eggs btw thx!!
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  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
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    percyj, [​IMG]

    And congrats on the ducks!

    I started my runners with turkey/waterfowl starter crumbles, mixing one part rolled oats which I chopped up or ground up a bit at first (not instant oats or flavored oats) to five parts crumbles.

    Clean water at all times until they were six weeks old, then only 8 hours at night without food or water (food without water = choking, perhaps fatal)

    About day three I began a very light sprinkle of chick grit in their food. Maybe half a teaspoon in a six inch diameter feeder.

    Between weeks two and three we shifted to grower/maintenance pellets. I added increasing amounts of grower to the crumbles so that by about three weeks of age, it was all grower.

    When they began acting out breeding behaviors, and producing some milky discharge from their vents at about twelve weeks, I gave them a half to a cup of oyster shell free choice (separate dish) once a week. When the first egg was laid, I left the oyster shell with them all day - as much as they wish to eat.

    I also began adding a small handful of cat kibble to their pellets.

    They live outdoors in a house/night pen/day yard setup, total about two hundred or so square feet. They get salads daily, peas for treats every other day or so, they eat bugs they catch in their yard and I bring them slugs and bugs from the garden.

    Some people switch to layer rations when they start to lay. I followed Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks and got them calcium supplementation weeks before they started laying.
     
  3. percyj

    percyj Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 20, 2010
    Is grit really necceeary??? If I feed pellets
     
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    well, percyj, pellets are very good, and at the same time, I feel that after ducklings are a couple of weeks old, giving them salads (very finely chopped greens, not so much spinach, though) and a few (few!) peas as treats is good for their development, and it helps them associate you with wonderfulness. Without some grit, though, they won't be able to digest salad or peas. It could actually be very bad for them to eat "real food" without grit. The oats, for example, will be much harder for them to digest without grit in their diet.
     

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