getting ducks to go in at night

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Bad Andy, Jun 16, 2011.

  1. Bad Andy

    Bad Andy New Egg

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    Jun 9, 2011
    I travel alot and am not always home to let ducks and 2 geese in and out of coop. I have automatic door opener and closer, and they dont often go in at night, so they get locked out. this is a problem because i have already lost one to a fox.
    I have lights on timers, and I put one inside the coop that comes on at dark to attract them in after dark? hasn't really worked yet. can I put an automatic feeder inside to lure them in? . any other ideas? all my birds are not yet fully mature, and there is no set feeding schedual yet.
     
  2. bt03

    bt03 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Over the rainbow...
    That is a toughie. We had to train our ducks to go in every night. It took us a week and a half to train them by putting them in a bribing them in. You have to be consistent with putting them in or they will think it's ok to just go in sometimes and not others. Do you have a buddy that could maybe help you when you are out of town to help train them to go in at night? If not maybe a feeder or other nightly treats would help them learn that they should go in at night.
     
  3. RavenStorm

    RavenStorm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    They need a routine to entice them to go inside. The automatic feeder is a good idea. I used food to train mine to go into their pen at night, but I don't think my methods would work for you because of your situation.

    My ducks were very stubborn about going in at night. I would have to herd all of them in one at a time, sometimes having to resort to tapping them on the butt to get them moving. The way I fixed it was this: I would feed them just enough during the day that they would run out of food a little before sunset. As the sky got darker, they got hungrier. Then right before full dark I would go outside and make my "food time" noise. It's something I've ingrained into all my animals from the day I get them. I make a sharp clicking noise with my mouth while shaking a cup of the feed so that it rattles loudly. They come swarming. I would put just enough feed into the feeder to last them the night and then put it inside the pen, and they would all go rushing in so I could close it. Now, as it gets dark they wait inside the pen or just outside the door for me, no herding required.

    Maybe hook up an auto-feeder that makes some sort of noise that they can associate with food?
     
  4. TrystInn

    TrystInn Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ditto what Ravenstorm said - training! Our ducks love cat food, so I walk to the pen carrying a cup of it and they almost chase me down trying to get to it. I throw the catfood inside the pen and they run in. Works like a charm. Our Border Collie can do it all on her own, but this allows her to keep an eye out for the stragglers.
     
  5. littlenell1

    littlenell1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Our runner ducks put themselves to bed at night...or if not already in the hut as soon as I enter the enclosure they all file down to the hut and go in, and I shut the door. I have not had to herd them as such, unless it is not really dark enough. If I forget they still put themselves to bed as I discovered when I woke up in a sweat thinking they would all be fox food to find them all tucked up, warm and safe!
     

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