how old does ducks have to be

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Mother of All, May 13, 2010.

  1. Mother of All

    Mother of All Songster

    May 3, 2010
    How old until they can stay out side in an enclosed run with a small pond set-up. just the pond to swimming in and a feeder for food. or do they need to be in a housing set-up at night like chickens. They are about 3 to 4 weeks old and loves to swim. They grow faster they chickens so can they go outside earlier?
  2. 4-H chicken mom

    4-H chicken mom Crowing

    Aug 3, 2007
    Oberlin, OH
    Ducks need the same protection from night predators as do chickens. Unless you have a secure pen, top and bottom completely covered with wire, I would not leave them out all night. [​IMG]
  3. Mother of All

    Mother of All Songster

    May 3, 2010
    They are in a secured pen. which is in my backyard with my dogs. The question I'm asking is how old do they need to be before I can leave them out within their pen. I'm in Alabama and nights are mostly in the 60's I think
  4. classroomducks

    classroomducks Songster

    Sep 19, 2009
    Fort Worth, Tx
    If you put them outside at 3 1/2 weeks they are going to need a heat lamp and a shelter. Starting at 95-100 degrees when they are born and go down 5 degrees for every week after that...puts them at no less than 80 degrees at 4 weeks old. You said 60 over night so it would probably be a little chilly without a heat lamp. Plus they still probably shouldnt have completely unsupervised swimming til they have more feathers.
  5. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Some ducks, like mine, like a house. Some won't go in a house. You might try with a temporary house, like a dog igloo and see what they do.

    As for temperatures, yes, at four weeks I would not have mine where they cannot get to a warm dry spot that is about seventy degrees F.

    And it takes weeks for them to get feathers and get their feathers oiled properly before they can be safely left with swimming water.

    Sounds like a nice setup for grownup ducks - just the little ones can do some goofball things, and can catch a chill and that can be bad news.
  6. Bettacreek

    Bettacreek Crowing

    Jan 7, 2009
    Central Pennsyltucky
    Mine are just over three weeks old and mine have been outside for about a week now, and I'm in PA. During warm days, everyone gets to free-range, but at night or cold, yucky days, they get locked in the coop with the light on. Last night they probably could have gone without a lamp, but I turned it on because I worry about predators. I'd like to set up motion lights in my animal areas to help deter predators.
    My pen has a tarp over it (to be honest, it was put up to give them shade, as I lost a duckling due to the heat) and a plastic dog house in it, nothing more.
    Last edited: May 14, 2010

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