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First Ducks

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by WoodsmanA, Apr 2, 2016.

  1. WoodsmanA

    WoodsmanA Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 2, 2016
    Hi All,

    First I want to thank everyone on here for the endless source of information that helped me gain so much knowledge before attempting my hand at raising ducks. I've learned so much. Thank you.

    This is my first go at raising ducks, or any poultry for that matter. I think had I had the space to do it in years past I certainly would have already jumped into it. But, last September I bought my homestead in the middle of no where and finally have the space to do the things I've always wanted to do. Honey bees, an insanely huge garden, mill my own lumber, and yes ... Ducks!

    I have an unhealthy obsession with wild fowl. Thus, chickens weren't going to cut it for me. I had to start with ducks. Placed an order with a farm out west for six Rouens back in January. Selected their March 28th hatch. Yes... Rouens because they look like mallards. But also, I thought they'd be a great start given everything I had read about all the different species of domestics.

    Things got off to a rocky start, though. The ducks were suppose to arrive this past Wednesday on March 30th. In the excitement and anticipation of the ducklings arrival I barely slept the night before. 5 AM rolled in and I shortly expected a call from the post office that the birds had arrived. Well, no call. So I called them... "Nope, no birds came in on the 5 o'clock truck. We'll call you if they come in on the 7 AM truck." Of course, no birds on the 7 o'clock truck and, as if I wasn't already worried enough about the ducklings, no birds came in on the 11 o'clock express truck either. Great... I was completely bummed out. Thought for sure the birds would perish. Called the farm and they told me to wait until Thursday. If they showed up and there would losses, theyd replace the birds with their next hatching. Shutting off the brooder lamp over an empty bin that night was really depressing.

    Got up at 4 AM the following morning and turned the lamp back on, hoping and praying the birds would arrive. 5:23 AM and the phone rings. The birds made it in. Rushed down to the post office, picked up the birds which were still alive (I was shocked) and rushed them back home. Right out of the box the birds started drinking and chowing down on crumbles. But one wasn't looking too good. One of the males. He was acting as though he was drunk. Couldn't find his balance. Two hours later he died in the corner of the bin. That was a bummer but hey, that's life. The farm through in an extra unsexed bird so I still have my 6. Four are females, one is a male and one is a mystery at this point. All are doing well.

    I've got a million questions but I'll reserve those for when of if I need help or the birds are doing something that doesn't seem right. Was hoping to share a couple pictures of the little guys but how the heck do I do that?

    In the meantime, thanks again to everyone on here. Looking forward to learning more and more as time goes on here.
     
  2. Wild Hair

    Wild Hair Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 30, 2016
    Kansas
    You took so many words right out of my mouth. I have also found all the information on BYC to be extremely helpful. I've got runners expected to ship in a couple weeks and have spent nearly all my free time building a coop or reading through BYC. I'm sorry about your lost little one and I wish you good luck with all the rest. I can't wait to be brooding my little ducks!
     
  3. bondfamily007

    bondfamily007 Out Of The Brooder

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    Feb 18, 2016
    TX
    Super jealous of your spread, sounds like a great homestead! Sorry for the painful start, but things will get better from here.
     
  4. WoodsmanA

    WoodsmanA Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 2, 2016
    Thanks guys. This morning I built a small raised platform with scrap wood and hardware cloth and put a plastic pan under it to catch the water from the ducks. Man are they messy! Also snipped off their little leg bands.

    Figured out the pictures... Here are my little ones and the duck house I've been building. I'm only into the build for $105 so far. Everything except the side paneling and the hardware for the doors was either donated to me or I had on hand already. Looking to start building a 15' by 12' run that encloses the entire house this week. I work in wildlife control so it's go big or go home as far as predator proofing the run. I think for the bears I'll have to look into a solar powered electric wire. Using a 40 gallon equine tub as the future pond. My well is low flow recovery rate at only 1/2 gallon per minute so I plan to catch rain water off the roof of the duck house and my house for the pond and the garden.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. Wild Hair

    Wild Hair Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 30, 2016
    Kansas
    Awesome. Ducklings and coop look great. I'm glad I won't be dealing with bears.
     
  6. BarrerasDucks

    BarrerasDucks Out Of The Brooder

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    Mar 24, 2015
    Corbett, Oregon
    Looks good! Now be sure you let them out and put them up at the same time EVERYDAY! SUNRISE TO SUNSET! Give them peas to reward them for going to bed when you say bed time or night night....whatever key word you use. Also use key words like Come on or yell ducks!! They will come to you. When you do this give them peas! My ducks respond to key words and I ALWAYS reward them with peas or romaine lettuce. They are smart but more than smart they love treats. Don't give the treats just because. Only use treats to reward. You will be amazed how well they can be trained! Good luck and congrats! Get attached its OK! Lol!
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2016
  7. pattiducks1212

    pattiducks1212 New Egg

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    Mar 29, 2016
    I'm a new ducks mom too I got five week old Kahki Campbell's I think my chicks know I'm partial to the ducks lol. I've been given them rooster booster since I got them should I add niacin or Brewers yeast to their water too?? And how long to add this?? Help thx
     
  8. Adalida

    Adalida Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 21, 2015
    Montana
    WoodsmanA, Congrats on your new baby Rouens! They are really fun ducks. We have two of them who we raised from babies, and they are the sweetest things. We can pick them up whenever we want and they come running if they think we have treats, or if they hear the water running as we fill up their kiddie pool. We meant to get a girl and a boy, but Frank turned out to be a girl and is now Frankie. Frankie and Lola were a very LOUD and vocal pair of ducklings who grew up to be a pair of LOUD and vocal ducks, which is one of the things I love best about them. They've always got something to say. If yours are anything the same, you'll have quite the babble going on with six of them!

    As a side note, everyone on BYC says their ducks love peas, but apparently I have odd ducks because neither my Rouens, Indian Runners or Muscovy care about peas at all. Lettuce is definitely a favorite though.
     
  9. Adalida

    Adalida Chillin' With My Peeps

    531
    107
    111
    Nov 21, 2015
    Montana
    WoodsmanA, Congrats on your new baby Rouens! They are really fun ducks. We have two of them who we raised from babies, and they are the sweetest things. We can pick them up whenever we want and they come running if they think we have treats, or if they hear the water running as we fill up their kiddie pool. We meant to get a girl and a boy, but Frank turned out to be a girl and is now Frankie. Frankie and Lola were a very LOUD and vocal pair of ducklings who grew up to be a pair of LOUD and vocal ducks, which is one of the things I love best about them. They've always got something to say. If yours are anything the same, you'll have quite the babble going on with six of them!

    As a side note, everyone on BYC says their ducks love peas, but apparently I have odd ducks because neither my Rouens, Indian Runners or Muscovy care about peas at all. Lettuce is definitely a favorite though.
     

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