How to feed ducks...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by KristenW, Dec 9, 2014.

  1. KristenW

    KristenW Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 24, 2014
    Hey folks,

    So I've just brought home my very first ducks, three Cayugas, two ducks and a drake, and a Mallard duck. We've had them two days and they seem happy enough. They play in the water and are dabble about, I've even seen the Cayugas mating, they just don't seem to be feeding yet... not from what I put down anyway.

    The previous owners fed them on a combination of mixed corn and barley which I've put down in large bowls with fresh greens and water each day. I also added a few layers pellets as I was hoping I might eventually be able to feed them on the same mix as our hens. The lettuce has gone but everything else has been poked at and left.

    I'm sure when they're hungry enough they'll find it but wondered if anyone had any suggestions? Should I place food on the floor or in the water in stead. At the moment we have two large sunken tubs filled with water as ponds. I was hoping to avoid spoiling the water with two much food.

    Eventually we'll free range them round our garden but I just can't imagine they're getting enough from the leaf litter in their run.....



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    Last edited: Dec 9, 2014
  2. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    aw, they are cute!

    i use regular feeders, a small rubber livestock bowl.. or you can get small metal troughs, main thing is remember ducks shovel their food vs chickens who peck so feeders must allow for that... for feed itself, i use whole corn, a 4 grain scratch and a 16% pullet grower with my ducks.. that is everyone from bantam thru to large waterfowl..

    Ducks dislike change so some adjustment will be needed, to give an example when i hung a large galvanized feeder years ago in the main barn they refused to go in lol

    They did get over it but they fear new places, new things it's quite common and normal.

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    Last edited: Dec 9, 2014
  3. KristenW

    KristenW Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks Going Quackers. Yes, we've used a wide, round bottomed bowl as that's what they're used to so we know they can feed from it. I can easily replicate your feed suggestions so I'll give that a try and hopefully with a bit of time they'll start enjoying it.

    Have you any tips for bossy ducks? The mallard is very harsh with one of the female Cayugas. She's spending most of her day inside as the mallard is at her as soon as she steps out.
     
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Welcome to BYC.. sometimes giving a bully some time out helps to stir up the pecking then when the bully gets put back with the flock they have been demoted. it might work in this case. if you have a way to separate the Mallard for about a week . Seems this time of year the girls have a go at each other more so than any other time. I'm seeing it so have others posted. So hopefully giving Miss Mallard so time to herself will straighten it out. Your 2 Cayugas are beautiful congrats on getting them.
     
  5. KristenW

    KristenW Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks Miss Lydia. I had thought about putting her in with my chickens for a few days. I'm just concerned that they will be too harsh with her although they're generally a good bunch really. The last lot of newbies I introduced were just ignored. I shall keep watch all the same :)
     
  6. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    That might work, but like you say you never know how the hens will act so keep an eye on them. They may teach her a few lesson and she might be so happy to be back with the ducks an she'll be on her best behavior. lol
    Keep us updated!
     
  7. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    As ML said a separation maybe needed, most of my girls sort their own, i have stepped in the odd time to break it down and that usually ends it but the reality is their is a pecking order and ducks need to establish this.

    Chickens just watch they peck and make me nervous with ducks, i do have some who free range around my flock but i always watch when confrontations occur due the vast nature of the way they fight don't want to loose an eye!
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2014
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