How to look after a mother Muscovy and her ducklings? (Not sure what to feed them)

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Eika, Jan 8, 2014.

  1. Eika

    Eika Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 1, 2013
    Hi, sorry for the silly question which is probably obvious, but I'm not sure what to feed my muscovy hen and her new babies. There are 3 so far, I'm on holiday so am being told about it via facebook and need to tell my Mum what to feed them. I've got adult pellets (I've been told you can't feed to babies) and chick starter/grower (It's got coccidiostats in it but the type that is safe for ducks, I've used it before with no problems) so what should I do?: Mix them? Separate mum from babies and feed separately? (Can't really do that as like I said I'm away and my mum works full time). I've handraised ducklings before but never had them raised by their mother so I'm not sure how much to interfere, but want to to the best for them obviously.

    At the moment she's safe and warm in the duck pen with all other ducks banished to the field and shelter. She's locked in there while the rest of the eggs hatch as there are 2 large males outside, would they attack the babies?

    Any advice is very much appreciated, also I apologise in advance if it takes me a while to reply to anything as my laptop is not very reliable for it's internet...

    Thank you!
    Eika
     
  2. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    Go with the starter BUT it may need added niacin since ducks require more, unless it's a broiler type. I always use a multi purpose/flock raiser for mine, mums and babes eat the same, super simple, she'll likely benefit from the extra anyways.

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  3. Eika

    Eika Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks Quackers, I have a mineral/vitamin mix that I can add to their food which contains Niacin, it's designed for birds and I use it on the adults 2-3 times a week. Do you think this would be ok for the babies for an added boost? It's called MyBeau Avian.
     
  4. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    No experience, i'll see if can get somebody who does to help, i don't use anything here as the feed i can access is acceptable for ducks from day 1 without additives.
     
  5. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    I think it would be fine to use this vitamin with your ducklings till you can get home and get different feed but mix it about half of what they say since you don't want to give them tummy upset. I use a poultry vitamin for my ducklings when first hatched and mama too since she has put out alot of energy sitting and hatching. Once she takes them outside she'll show them things they can eat and i stop giving extra vitamins. I usually keep my drakes away from mama and ducklings for 3-4 weeks just in case one drake decides he doesn't like them, they can kill ducklings. I keep them where everyone can see them but they have their own space[fenced in area with house] till they have their legs under them and can keep out of the way of the big drakes, but even ducks can be mean to ducklings if not theirs so it's best to be safe than sorry. and all my flock eats the same feed an all flock, but years ago when I used starter for newly hatched ducklings and chicks everyone ate it. so go ahead and feed mom same thing as babies. Congrats on new ducklings and be sure to post pics when you get home.
     
  6. Eika

    Eika Out Of The Brooder

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    Sorry for the delay, and thank you very much! They are now happy and healthy with their mum, feed is a nice mix of chick starter with a tiny bit of cat food and vitamins mixed in. They're doing great! Will pop up some photos of them once I get home.
    Thanks again for the great advice :)
     
  7. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Looking forward to seeing them. Glad to hear they are all doing well. [​IMG]
     
  8. Eika

    Eika Out Of The Brooder

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    At long last I got some pics! Mum and babies doing well, we did lose one in the very early days (suspected rat or neighbour's cat, went missing within 10 minutes of being check on and was never found :( ) but the remaining 6 are happy, healthy and huge. Just getting to that phase where all they want to do is chase bluebottles all day...way too cute! I've introduced them slowly to the 2 drakes carefully through a fence and both drakes have been marvelous with them, even taking over their care while Mum has a break and potters around by herself. I never knew drakes could be so strong on the parenting aspect, is this normal? One duckling is convinced he's a chicken by night (stays with his siblings and foster parents all day yet once darkness starts to fall he heads off to the chicken coop by himself and tried to tuck in with our Brown shaver and her 5 chicks - the shaver is less than impressed haha. Another has decided that the white drake is the coolest uncle ever and likes to sneak into his pen and spend the afternoons snoozing next to him. Couldn't be happier with how they are all getting along. :) [​IMG]
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  9. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    Aw, what a sweet family! sorry for the loss of the one. The pool is that a Beyblade arena? [​IMG] and yes some drakes can be wonderful with babies sadly others can be nasty, you just don't know, that is why it's always recommended to watch carefully.
     
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  10. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Babies are adorable so happy to hear all are doing well and drakes like them, very sorry for the loss of the one. Thanks for updating along with pics. [​IMG]
     

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