How do you Keep ducks in the winter ?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by chicken crazed 1o1, Jan 25, 2012.

  1. chicken crazed 1o1

    chicken crazed 1o1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 29, 2011
    Dugald , Manitoba
    Hi I live in Canada and would like to keep ducks in winter ? I cant afford to use a heat lamp for a whole winter and the breed im planning on getting is pekins.
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2012
  2. nickie

    nickie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    While I am not in Canada, I live in Kentucky. We can get a bit cold for a while, not Canada cold, but... Anyway, I have pekins. They are yard ducks with a converted outhouse for shelter should they choose to use it. I do not pen them or keep them locked up in ant way. During winter I provide small windbreaks throughout the yard. They don't use their house, ever.

    I have found the hardest thing about ducks in winter is keeping their water from freezing. They MUST have water at all times.

    Did you know ducks "swim" in snow. Strangest thing I ever saw one morning taking fresh water out I saw swirly paths in the snow. They looked like someone had a mixing bowl and was pushing it around and around in the yard, but there were no footprints. I saw the ducks laying in the snow and then they started moving... Funny stuff.

    To provide them with greens I give them any and all lettuce scraps or I buy the discount veggies and throw them around. I have friends save all of their green scraps too.

    In case I wasn't clear, I do not provide heat or light for these girls. It may be something that other Canadian duck keepers can advise you about.
     
  3. chicken crazed 1o1

    chicken crazed 1o1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 29, 2011
    Dugald , Manitoba
    Thank you
     
  4. 4-H chicken mom

    4-H chicken mom Overrun With Chickens

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    I live in northern Ohio and we get some prettey cold winters, although not this year [​IMG]. My ducks are in a covered avairy with access to an inside pen. I do make them go inside when it is going to below freezing, which doesn't make them happy, but I don't provide heat lamps. I do keep their water font on a heated base so it doesn't freeze. Good luck.
     
  5. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    I'm in Canada..

    Mine all go into a barn at night, it's a wood floor, with rubber stall mats and then bedded with shavings, i also put straw in the "nesting" areas.

    I do have a heat lamp in there but it's not costly to run.. i found it became needed when we shot down to -30(add windchills to that as well) as i had some cold birds.. you'll also likely need a heated water bucket.. i know we do.. for the most part my birds do fine only the bitter cold sends things off the rails.. on those super bad days i have actually kept them in however in the more moderate cold.. -10 i let them out...(they free range)

    I only have Muscovy so i have to mind the fleshy parts on the faces, they are touch more vulnerable than some other breeds because of that.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2012
  6. Ducks and Banny hens

    Ducks and Banny hens Chillin' With My Peeps

    Nov 22, 2011
    On a little Farm.
    I'm in Canada, a zone lower than you. Ducks don't need a heatlamp (unless there are only banny ducks), as long as they are kep sheltered.
     
  7. Smiles-N-Sunshine

    Smiles-N-Sunshine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Are you talking Celsius or Fahrenheit temps? -10 F is NOT moderate, it's dangerous! (Says the guy living in the desert.) [​IMG]
     
  8. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    Celsius.. -10C = 14F which they do fine in but when we hit -20C so -4F or worse when we went -30C so -22F My ducks were showing signs of being cold.. (shaking/shivering) i know and have read numerous statements of "they don't need heat" BUT my birds were telling me otherwise so i went with that, short of knitting sweaters [​IMG] it was the right step(adding my heat lamp)..

    I think one has to follow what their animals are telling them, and then act accordingly.. [​IMG]

    And if your warm.. like desert warm my temps would feel pretty darn cold.. although do you drop down at night? i know some desert areas do but no idea if all of them are part of it... i've only been in this country never left it ... [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2012
  9. JulieNKC

    JulieNKC Overrun With Chickens

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    Yep. Last winter I put my silkie chickens outside at 6 weeks, and it was a cold one. It stayed in the negatives all day, and in the negative teens at night for a few weeks. They did just fine, no heat lamp. Ducks can deal with cold weather even better, so unless it's ridiculously cold I wouldn't worry. The only thing I worry about is making sure they have access to fresh, unfrozen water which can be a pain with temps that low.
     
  10. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    So then mine shivering/shaking wasn't a sign of them being cold? and yes the water has to be "plugged" in after certain temps otherwise they get a skating rink which leaves them less than impressed lol
     

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