Female Mallard duck drinks too much water in a day

sophoebia

Chirping
Jun 7, 2020
15
48
59
Hi everyone, I have a 8-month-old female mallard in my backyard. I just noticed that she drinks so much water in these few days, even in the evening, it finished 2 gallons water in 3 hours…I actually have one male duck living with her, but I’m pretty sure she drank the most. Does anyone know what happened with her?? Thanks so much.
 

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Coops Dad

Songster
May 10, 2020
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too close to Waco, TX
Ducks dabble in the water to soften and swallow food; they also use it for grooming and play. There's no way a duck can drink 2 gallons in 3 hours- she'd be geysering out her vent if she did.

Ducks and toddler humans are the only beings on earth who can take a slice of bread and a cup of water and turn it into a quarter acre of muddy dirt and poop.
 

GranderTheGander

Songster
Premium Feather Member
Feb 3, 2021
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The ducks are using it for bathing. If it's big enough or low enough to get in, a duck will get in a container. They often splash their wings, too, which sends the water flying out. If not big enough, they will stand next to the water container and continuously dabble in it to preen their feathers. Ducks are waterfowl. Unlike chickens, it's not natural for them to be surrounded by nothing but dry land or dry floors. You might want to get them a pool.
 

sophoebia

Chirping
Jun 7, 2020
15
48
59
The ducks are using it for bathing. If it's big enough or low enough to get in, a duck will get in a container. They often splash their wings, too, which sends the water flying out. If not big enough, they will stand next to the water container and continuously dabble in it to preen their feathers. Ducks are waterfowl. Unlike chickens, it's not natural for them to be surrounded by nothing but dry land or dry floors. You might want to get them a pool.
Thank you for the response. There’s not a big container when she’s drinking water, it’s a small cup just a little bigger than Duck’s head. She keeps drinking water like never stop, I’m not sure if she wants to clean the beak, but it looks clean inside. Before the sunset, we have a bigger container with water for them, but she didn’t drink that much water at the time with that big container…
 

Crazy Maizie

Crowing
Jul 3, 2020
3,005
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Thank you for the response. There’s not a big container when she’s drinking water, it’s a small cup just a little bigger than Duck’s head. She keeps drinking water like never stop, I’m not sure if she wants to clean the beak, but it looks clean inside. Before the sunset, we have a bigger container with water for them, but she didn’t drink that much water at the time with that big container…
Why such a small container of water? It sounds like she's playing in it. Ducks love to play in water and maybe she's just making a game of it.
 

GranderTheGander

Songster
Premium Feather Member
Feb 3, 2021
293
488
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Thank you for the response. There’s not a big container when she’s drinking water, it’s a small cup just a little bigger than Duck’s head. She keeps drinking water like never stop, I’m not sure if she wants to clean the beak, but it looks clean inside. Before the sunset, we have a bigger container with water for them, but she didn’t drink that much water at the time with that big container…
As chickens really says, she's probably playing with the water in the small cup, so it's always empty. They also dabble in dirt and then drink water or clean their beaks in the water. Do you see her dabbling a lot where she's at during the night? Ducks aren't night sleepers like chickens. They can be active day or night. Wild ducks are often more awake during the night than day, because they have to be more alert for predators and are on the water in the dark. It's instinctive and I'm sure "domestic mallards" have the same instincts. Also, of course, the hotter the weather or night housing, the more water is used.
 
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Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Oct 3, 2009
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And if she is emptying the small cup and maybe going for a length of time without water she may be over doing it when she finally gets some. Ducks need to be able to dunk their heads to clean their eyes and nares out a lot. My ducks can take a 2 gallon bucket and splash and drink it down halfway in less than an hour. They have many buckets available because it's the nature of ducks and their water.
 

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