Got 2 ducklings from the feed store - help?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by OCeggs23, Apr 3, 2017.

  1. OCeggs23

    OCeggs23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hi!
    We have raised baby chicks and went to the feed store for more chicken supplies. Saw some ducklings and well... apparently chicken math includes ducks too!
    The store said they are about 2.5 weeks old. Would you guess that's about right?
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    No idea what sex or breed - guesses there would be appreciated too! :)

    My main concerns now are food and water and shelter. We brought them in the house and put them in our chick brooder box. We used the Mama Heating Pad method for heat for chicks, so we are trying that for the ducks as well. Took them some time running around the box, but I finally got them to relax and rest/warm up on the pad. Which they have now (5 min later) abandoned.
    [​IMG]

    The feed store had the ducklings in a pen with no water. When I expressed my concern, the owner said the ducks would drink non-stop and kill themselves, so they only give them water every 2 hours. I thought this was strange since they are WATERFOWL. After reading, it turns out ducklings do this when they have been denied water and it suddenly reappears. So when we brought them home we gave them food and water - which they went crazy on - and kept refilling hoping they would eventually stop. But they didn't and seemed obsessive, so eventually we removed it.
    I dont want to perpetuate the cycle - how can I wean them back yo having food and water available 24/7?

    We also want to be able to put them outside with our four pullets (almost 8 weeks old). We have a large enclosed space and there is electricity to the coop, so we plan to have the heating pad plugged in there. We live in Southern California... temps in the low 70s daytime, low 50s nighttime. When can we introduce them to the run/coop?

    Any and all help is very appreciated! Thank you!!
     
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  2. Ducks4us

    Ducks4us Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ducklings need water 24/7 . and will choke when eating if they dont have water. they will stop when they have had enough, and them they will sit and dabble/ play in the water for a long time. half gets splashed out.
    i agree with 2.5 weeks old. looks like a pekin- yellow and i guess a rouen although i have never seen one that light colored.....
    make sure the water is deep enough to dunk their head and clean out their nose.
    at 2.5 weeks mine liked to warm up around 76-78 degrees but like the other side where it was 65-70 where they ate and drank
    you wont be able to leave them out with the chicks till prob 4-5 weeks old.
    are you adding niacin to the ducks feed! ducklings NEED this till around 10-12 weeks
    i give mine niacin in the form of nutritional yeast - 1tablespoon per cup of feed. and i feed nutrena all flock feed. chick feed doesnt have what ducklings need.
     
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  3. Ducks4us

    Ducks4us Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i did brood mine outside with a heat lamp... but i wouldnt mix them with 8 week old chicks untill they are 4-5 weeks
     
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  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Chickens can really hurt ducklings they peck hard. So @Ducks4us is right, but I'd let them be around the chicks often with supervision so they all get use to each other.


    Precious ducklings @OCeggs23
     
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  5. OCeggs23

    OCeggs23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 8, 2017
    Orange County, CA
    Thank you for the tips! We have the ducklings outside, letting them explore. Here they are checking out the pond!

    [​IMG]

    We are going to let them into the coop/run and supervise. The chickens are giving them a wide berth right now. I am going to pick up some niacin in a little bit!
     
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  6. TLWR

    TLWR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are you planning to let them use that pretty pond?
    If given free access, they will likely make a huge mess, if not destroy it. I'm guessing the water lettuce will be gone.
     
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  7. OCeggs23

    OCeggs23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 8, 2017
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    We will let them use the pond when we let them out on the weekends. It actually wraps around to the left and makes a large letter "C" for filtration purposes. Help with the water lettuce would be great since we are dumping half of it every weekend and usually have to do so through summer. Right now they are trimming the algae from yhe sides. LOL
    During the day they'd be in the run. Hubs wanted to put a smallish stream in there "for the chickens" (he designed and buikt the pond you see in the picture) - now that we have ducks he's even more eager. I told him it will be a mess but he's not paying attention. I'm looking at waterers they will like in the interim....
     
  8. Krazyquilts

    Krazyquilts Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

    I agree with @Ducks4us. When my ducks were babies, they loved playing in water. And if they aren't playing in it, then they are drinking eat, getting it mucky, pooping in it, cleaning their nares in it, throwing it everywhere, etc. Ducks are called "WATERfowl" for a reason. :rolleyes:

    [VIDEO]

    Ducks in general really love to play in water. My Golden Cascade drake plays in the pool almost all the time; even when the ducks are out foraging he would rather bathe, then preen. Then bathe again. And again.

    [VIDEO]
     
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  9. OCeggs23

    OCeggs23 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh my goodness. That first video of the ducklings' first bath is beyond adorable!!! [​IMG]
    And that water... pit??.. in the 2nd video is such a great idea! We may have to adopt it when the ducks get bigger!

    In the interim, my husband fashioned a duckling water fountain that has a constant cycling stream of water. I'll get a pic tomorrow.
    Right now the sun has set and because we are using a heating pad and not a lamp, it is dark and the ducklings are freaking out!!! Ugh...
     
  10. Batduck46

    Batduck46 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Very cute! :love For breeds, I would say Pekin left, possibly Rouen on the right? Do you know what breeds the store carries? As for gender, females quack, while drakes make a noise like Donald Duck. You can tell by voice sexing when they are, what, 6-8 weeks? Im no expert, so please check my answers against someone else. :confused:
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2017
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