Hubbys finally getting his ducks.

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Whitewinterwolf, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. Whitewinterwolf

    Whitewinterwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 11, 2011
    Massachusetts
    Alright, now just a few questions.
    He is getting two Peking ducks, both female, ages 7 months and a year. The previous owner could not keep them due to there neighbors not being to fond of there beautiful noise.
    He is all excited, its so cute! He wants to get an Indian runner to with them because of the eggs hehe.
    But! Onto my questions.
    We have a stream running threw our front yard, its deep in some areas and shallow in others. Part of our yard is covered mostly in moss, with thick arborvitaes and a rock wall blocking off the neighbors, to the left it is mostly open into our front yard and the stream. To the right is a thin strip of forest that stretches along the fence line to the state protected forest that surrounds the back of all the houses.
    This little moss area is shaded and full of worms hehe, but my question is how protected should I make there house? Should I build a run and let them out every morning like the chickens? Should I take my chances and just give them a duck house since nothing *knock on wood* comes near our home because of the dogs? Or should I pen them up 24/7?
    And what do duck houses look like? I was just going to take a dog house and put a door on it? *Feel free to yell if that's a really bad idea*

    Next question: How far do ducks normally free range and will they stick to the water? Our front yard is not fenced like the backyard for the chickens and dogs. We want to let them free range since we have a lot of land and space, but our neighbor is terrified of birds due to a bad experience as a child, so we want to be respectful of them.

    Next: How many ducks need to be in a flock for them to all be happy? Or will they be fine in groups of two or three?

    And last question: What do we feed the ducks in? And since they will have a stream do we need to bring them fresh water every day?

    He just went out and bought the "Ducks for dummy's" book so he will be all set, I'm just jumping ahead of him and asking people who already have ducks.
     
  2. Goin Quackrrs

    Goin Quackrrs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 11, 2012
    Western Washington

    Like I said above, I am pretty overprotective of my ducks. It's a personal choice how much risk you want to take with them. The eagles nest in my backyard was the deciding factor in only allowing supervised freerange.
     
  3. Whitewinterwolf

    Whitewinterwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 11, 2011
    Massachusetts
    1. Haha awesome, im glad to hear the runners will be amusing haha.

    2. Alright, then I know exactly what to do. thank you!

    3. Because there is no access to water in the backyard. None, and I want them to be able to enjoy a free flowing stream without having to change something three plus times a day. I would love to have them in the backyard, but im afraid that they wont be as happy, not with a stream taunting them anyway.
     
  4. My ducks are happy as long as they have some water. They don't care how much . . . We have a seasonal pond not far away from their winter area, and the ducks were completely content playing in their kiddie pool, even though there was a much bigger pond within sight. There's also a bucket that they can get their heads into . . .

    I would let them out to play in the pond for an hour or so, when I could supervise them. It was fun to watch!

    You could always take the ducks for walks to the stream and let them play for awhile . . . . then put them back in with the chickens. I'd worry about them floating down the stream and off the property, or not wanting to come out of it though. Plus, the predator problem is bigger for distracted duckies playing in water . . .
     
  5. Whitewinterwolf

    Whitewinterwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 11, 2011
    Massachusetts
    I think I should elaborate, the stream is 4 inches across, 6 in the places we have dug out. Its maybe a foot and a half deep in front of the house. They physical cant float away in it unless there ducklings.
    I don't mind cleaning them not at all, but I don't want to deal with a kiddie pool as there previous owner has described how disgusting they make it.
    The fence, is literally 5 feet away from the stream on the other side, I can take pictures if you guys want?
    Supervised walks in the steam during the day I can do, I just don't want to torture them, which I think having the water so close, yet so far away, would be?
    Duck experts please feel free to correct me if I'm looking into this to much, I just know how my hens are when they are penned up with the grass taunting them.
     
  6. Whitewinterwolf

    Whitewinterwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 11, 2011
    Massachusetts
    Ok, you guys ended up convincing me so the ducks are in the backyard. My mother on the other hand...Not so much, were still working on her. Anyone want to comment with there years of experience of ducks not swimming in anything other then a bucket/bin/kiddie pool?
    And please also answer this: will two-three ducks kill two aker *wow I cant spell sorry!* of grass by them selves with either there foraging or there poop?

    And here they are!
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    I find them amusing, they love to bend there heads together and whisper about me and Adam. Especially if we don't bring the food down in time lol.
    They do love to follow the chickens around, and bite at them if they dont want to share the water buckets *Which is why there are now seven outside*
    There names are Tattle and Tail.
     
  7. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    aw, they are so darn cute! All my Muscovy 'make do' with kiddy pools... i have a total of 3(well 2 are converted sandboxes but whatever they don't know that lol) They are quite happy with them, plus massive advantage of being able to control the where and the cleanliness.

    I don't think 2 when wandering in a yard should destroy the ground, all my birds free range but they have an area they congregate and they have not ruined the grass.. I have 8 so that is a lot concentrated in one area. You can hose down the droppings that is what i do in the areas sat around the most, besides it makes the grass grow like crazy and super green.
     
    Last edited: Apr 18, 2012
  8. Whitewinterwolf

    Whitewinterwolf Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 11, 2011
    Massachusetts
    I am glad to hear that! Hopefully more people can chime in and share there duck experiences with me so I can have her sit down and read what others have gone threw.
    The fertilizing the grass part I think will be a plus for her!
    And they are 100% adorable!!
    The only issue we have with them is teaching them that the chicken coop is not there house, the duck coop is @[email protected]
     
  9. Goin Quackrrs

    Goin Quackrrs Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 11, 2012
    Western Washington
    [​IMG]

    My ducks are perfectly happy with a kiddie pool. I should add a second one though, it dirties quickly.
     
  10. grandma duck

    grandma duck Out Of The Brooder

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    Apr 17, 2012
    I live in desert country (Albuquerque, NM) and don't have room for a "flushable" pond, what with four horses, etc. I had 6 geese and two ducks, and have replaced the ducks one at a time as they died. Our last goose lived for 21 years, with a duck for a "Seeing-eye Duck" when she went blind. ( Lucy goose died last month.)

    All of these gals lived fine with kiddie pools. Yucked them up fast, so had to dump them and refill daily in the summer. They love that clean bath! My two ducks (adopted a drake), now have two kiddie pools. Works well.[​IMG]
     

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