how to tame my pet ducks?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by TheDuckCrew, Feb 21, 2009.

  1. TheDuckCrew

    TheDuckCrew Songster

    Feb 21, 2009
    so i bought four pekin ducks may 13, 2008. they were a couple days old and TERRIFIED of people. you got anywhere near them, they would freak and try their hardest to get away. despite our best efforts, their views on people never really changed. for awhile, the girl slushie, would let me (and only me) pet her but only while she was eating watermelon. the guys were bad influences and soon she was afraid of me again. they trust me the most out of anybody because i'm the one that cares for them. when herding them into their pen for the night, they let me walk rather close.
    one day, it was about 60 (yeah in the middle of jan!!) so i pulled out their little kiddie pool. our hose broke so i had to lug gallons of water across our rather large yard to fill up their pool. chubby, the dominate duck, climbed in and wouldn't get out. i approached slowly because i didn't want to scare him and he just sat there looking at me. i kneeled down and started to pour in the water. he decided he wanted to splash. he splashed about a gallon of dirty duck water all over me. i screamed "chubby!" and that just made him do it again. that is the closest i have ever been to him.
    well now that i had an extremely long story that wasn't really needed, i'm going to get back to why i started writing this.
    okay, so, i want to tame them. i want to be able to sit there and have them come up to me and (maybe) be able to pet them--it might be wishful thinking though! any ideas? thanks!
    Raenh, DiYMama540 and MissRePass like this.
  2. Boggy Bottom Bantams

    Boggy Bottom Bantams Crowing

    Mar 9, 2008
    Hahira, GA
    Bad as I hate to say it, they will most likly never be that type of pet.
    You will need to start with they as dayolds preferably and spend as much time with them as possible. They will imprint on you at an early age, geese will do it even better.
    But once they are ste in thier ways, you are pretty much out of luck.
    My best advise is to just spend time with them, be quiet around them, USE FEED to lure them to you, and see if the will let you touch them, nver try to force the matter, you'll have to let it be thier discision. If you frighten them, you just be backing up the progress you made. But in the log run, a true pet needs to be started at birth for the best and easiest end results.
    Good luck with it,
    Raenh and DiYMama540 like this.
  3. DuckLady

    DuckLady Administrator

    Jan 11, 2007
    NE Washington State
    The above is correct. Your ducks will learn not to be afraid of you and may even eat from your hand. HTey won't be under-your-feet friendly in most cases.

    And WELCOME to BYC! [​IMG]
    Raenh and DiYMama540 like this.
  4. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

    Nov 20, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    How much a duck will like people almost completely depends on their imprinting and bonding. For a duck to really like it's humans, imprinting on humans (it doens't matter which human) and bonding to a human (which human does matter for bonding). When they are babies, even though they freak and want to be no where near you, it's important to well, uh, make them. They have t get used to being picked up, held, pet, etc. I have a 5 weeks old pekin who changes his mind every other week whether he likes us or is terrified of us. He currently will freak if we pick him up or hold his body, but he's okay with sitting by us and getting his head pet. You'll probably suffer tons of scratches for your efforts (I currently have about 20 on my arms, one on my nose, cheek, and eye lid, tons one my stomach from those long nails getting through my shirt.. the list goes on). But eventually they get used to it if you are persistant. My choc runner Hen hated being picked up and kicked ferosiously everytime we picked her up. But she now insists i come pet her and pick her up each morning.

    For your ducks, there might not be a fool proof way to fix it... But there are some things oyu can do to try to improve the relationship...

    Feed yummy treats closer and closer to you... i.e. throw they treats to them, then throw a little closer each time you go out to give them treats. See how close you can get them.

    Keep trying to get closer, since it seems to work when they were in the water. Next time if you can approach Chubby, try offering him some treats while you are there.

    If one gets sick or hurt (esp watch out for your girl, they tend to get banged on a little hard during mating), bring them inside near you while they get better. By feeding them, caring for them, putting them in the tub, being near them, etc sometimes teaches the duck that you're ok. Then afterwards they might like you better.

    Again, they only way to get friendly ducks is how you raise them as babies. The best most friendliest ducks are ducks that can not live outside (like mine, they have to be inside by humans all the time, and can never be outside ducks). Ducks who live outside have to maintain some of their fears of humans so they take care of themselves properly.
    Raenh and MissRePass like this.
  5. xfilesnumber1fan

    xfilesnumber1fan Songster

    Nov 24, 2008
    I got 2 mallard female grown about 4 months ago..They had never been messed with and were scared to death of me..They have come to not fear me and as far as being like my others I raised from babies it isnt going to happen..I have to keep the wings clipped...They are freaky..My others are very calm and can be caught easy..
  6. Ducklove334

    Ducklove334 Off to another pond

    Nov 4, 2008
    I raised most of my ducks from babies (except the auction rescues) despite my attempts they havn't really tamed, Boris and Sage were tamed for a while as babies, they loved me, but once they got with the big boys and girls, they were like "ugh"..

    however recently, my ducks have been getting unusually close to me, especially when I have food. wich they never used to do. :hmm they've always been wierd Anyways [​IMG]
  7. TheDuckCrew

    TheDuckCrew Songster

    Feb 21, 2009
    thanks for all the ideas! we had one of our ducks get is neck caught in a rope that was hanging from the tarp on top of their pen. i went running out with scissors to free him and my mom grabbed him to keep him still. i quickly cut him out and then my mom released him. at first, he was really afraid of us, but now he seems to be find with me and will get rather close. its hard to spend time with them now because it is SOOO cold out here! but every once and awhile i will sit out there with them and they will continue on like i'm not even there.
    Raenh likes this.
  8. rlhbond

    rlhbond Songster

    Jan 31, 2009
    Mocksville, NC
    Quote:Why is it unsafe for outside ducks to be tame to humans?
  9. WalkingWolf

    WalkingWolf Songster

    Jan 1, 2009
    North Carolina
    It is funny many years ago when my wife and I were courting and go to the local park the ducks would darn near climb on top of you to get a treat. Now that we have 6 ducks all raised for the first month inside that will run for the most part if you try to touch them. The only time that Daffy our oldest was really friendly was when Donald her companion was killed by a hawk at 6 weeks. We could not find her another duck locally and could only find a chicken to keep her company.

    That was mostly how our saga into chickens began. Until we hatched more ducks when I would go to sit with the chickens she would tug at my leg to be picked up. Once I added two more ducklings this was over.

    Ducks seem to have a much tighter bond to each other than chickens. I added gimpy and snoopy with Daffy and she took to them instantly. I then a month later added Huey, Dewey, and Louie, with the same results. They are never seperate from each other. There seems to never be the conflicts that the chickens have between themselves. But most of my chickens if I sit in a chair will gather around me, and some jump in my lap, the ducks avoid me. And the ducks have had much more handling while small.

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