How can you tell if ducks are going to start laying?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Featherland, Nov 6, 2010.

  1. Featherland

    Featherland Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Dec 28, 2007
    Missouri
    Is it anything like chickens? Chickens start to squat about a week before laying.
    Then when they are going to lay an egg they start getting a little frantic looking for a good place.
    I can always tell with them. Ducks I don't know yet.
    Mine are about 15 weeks old.
     
  2. luvchicks8

    luvchicks8 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 1, 2009
    new Hampshire
    Mine are 6 months old and no eggs yet [​IMG]
     
  3. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    My ducks showed no signs at all. They just started to leave eggs in nest and on the ground and go their daily ways as usual. They do not care at all. They lay each morning before we let them out.

    Ducks need 14-17 hours of light to lay eggs. I have a light bulb in the duck house on a timer that comes on at 4 am each day.
     
  4. gofasterstripe

    gofasterstripe Chillin' With My Peeps

    My ducks get out at 7.30 just as its getting light and are waiting to be put up at 6.30 just before it gets dark. All my ducks are still laying and they are on about 11 to 12 hours daylight a day. No electric out in the duck house. Im hoping they will keep on laying.
     
  5. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    You know I always wondered if it is the daylight hours or UV exposure? In the south and in high elevations is more UV present. I know plenty of people up here who have eggs without extra light. Our UV levels are very high. You get sunburned up here in the middle of winter, plus we have over 300 days of sunshine. We very seldom see clouds. Sunshine or the UV in it produces vitamin D in ducks. Vitamin D effects the thyroid, which does control their ovaries, and therefore egg production. Temperature is another factor. Freezing temps put ducks into a preservation stage and they stop laying. Keeping the duck house above freezing is also a way to prolong egg production. My duck house has large windows. My ducks can see out of it and enjoy the first light and sunshine coming up in the morning. I know some books say not to have windows so ducks don't get scared by moving branches etc, but I have to strongly disagree with that mentality.
     
  6. dumb_cluck

    dumb_cluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 26, 2010
    Upstate NY
    I am in upstate NY where there is not very may days of "sunshine". My mallards started laying in January. They were purchased as ducklings in June the year before.

    All I did was turn on the garage lights at about 6-7 am and turn them off at 2-3 PM and they laid eggs up until they were murdered by a mink or whatever.

    Sorry for the abuptness, but that's what I faced after caring for them over 1 year...........
     
  7. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

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    Jan 11, 2010
    Australia
  8. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    That article is the commonly known part. The effect of normal light on the pituitary gland and its effect on egg production. There is a second part which is related to UV intensity, which is not known that well yet and there are just not many articles about it. They haven't studies what intensity is the best in egg producing birds. They know it effects the thyroid, which also stimulates the ovaries in poultry. For example they know that a lack in Vitamin D reduces the egg production, even leaves some female birds outright infertile. The did expose birds to light with a UV filter and ended up with poor egg production. It does not effect drakes for some reason. So there is more then just light. This is the reason why I now use a plant growing bulb with the full light spectrum. My ducks currently get less then 14 hours of light even with the light bulb and still produce. The articles also omits the temperature equation. So much more to factor in.
     

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