How do ducks handle cold?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Bananarose24, Dec 6, 2010.

  1. Bananarose24

    Bananarose24 Out Of The Brooder

    Sep 13, 2010
    Baltimore, MD
    We have 5 ducks and I'm just wondering how they will do in the cold?
    What temperature is dangerous for them?

    We have them in an enclosure (they were attacked and 2 were killed by a red tail hawk a few months ago).
    Their enclosure is well set up, we've been thinking of covering a few of the sides with heavy packing blankets.
    We will also be getting a heated waterer soon.

    They have a dog igloo in the enclosure that they can go into if they are cold (they often do this at night).
    Any other ideas?

    Should I be concerned for them in the cold or the snow (which we havent had yet)?
  2. javajanie

    javajanie Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 10, 2010
    Southern MD
    I've been wondering the same thing! I'm a little south of you. So far, my ducks seem ok, but they spend the nights in my garage as my hubby is working on a new improved duck house/pen. I did feel bad when the kids let them out this morning, but those ducks headed straight to the cover of our inground pool and started playing in the water. I've made sure they have places to go to get out of the cold wind during the day, but they seem to prefer to hang out on my deck all day.
  3. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    They handle it just fine....they have built in down coats [​IMG]
  4. chickensducks&agoose

    chickensducks&agoose Chillin' With My Peeps

    i live on a mountain, and the past week, the highs have been in the 20s and the lows in the low teens. I've had ducks for 4 years, and our winters get down to -15 or -20 pretty regularly. our ducks are fine. i give them warm water in the morning, afternoon, and before bedtime, and shut them up in a clean cozy coop at night... no heaters or lights or anything... they're totally fine. i also make sure there's some clean straw on top of the snow so they don't have to walk on the ice.
  5. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Loving this country life Premium Member

    I am such a whimp, It's to get to zero with the wind chill tonight and I got out the heat lamp They have a nice house but they did look miserable today. They are Muscovy
  6. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I am interested (where it's not included in the signature) what breed and how many ducks people have. Seems that the larger breeds would do better in the cold, but calls, runners, other small breeds, especially if there are only a few of them, may not do as well in sub-freezing temperatures.

    Also, have there been unexplained mortalities in the flocks during winter? Have all of the ducks made it through x number of winters? How cold do their nighttime shelters actually get?
  7. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    Quote:I have 14 call ducks.....more than 1/2 of them are 7 years old....the rest 3-4 years old except one that they hatched this summer.
    We get in the teens (15 last night) and single digits quite frequently with wind chills well below zero. They have a dog house for shelter, but very rarely use it. If a lot of snow is forecast for overnight I'll herd them into it and they hate it. They do have a windbreak which they use to get out of our winds.
  8. StevenW.

    StevenW. Lovin' My Quackers!

    Oct 7, 2010
    Central, Illinois
    My ducks are crazy!! Ok this morning they were sleeping on a straw bale in the wind outside when it was snowing and I thought to myself "why dont they go into the coop wheres theres a heat lamp for them??" But the chickens are smart and stay inside where the heat lamps are [​IMG]
  9. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Thanks, Katy!

    My ten runners seem to much prefer the basement shelter. They like to take runs around the yard a bit, even in the cold, but after a while start standing at the gate that leads back into the warmer shelter. Their weight seems good - 3 - 4 pounds, shiny feathers (two are molting, though), active, alert, clear eyes, so I don't think it's a health issue. They are nine months old and have lived outside for six months, 24/7.

    When it dropped into the teens at night, they began "complaining."
  10. un-named

    un-named Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 15, 2010
    I was going to start a thread asking if my barn floor is 26 degrees, is it OK to let them swim in 40 degree water, but it sounds like it is fine.....
    I have one heat lamp, just in case, and they are locked inside in a big well lit barn. One has a cold or something, hope it's OK to let him swim when he is demanding it. other 4 calls are fine.

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