HUGE list of good and bad treats, and why they are bad!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by nettie, Feb 24, 2009.

  1. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

    Nov 20, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Throughout my dealings with ducks, I have compiled a huge list of good and bad treats you can feed your ducks and geese along with their feed.... This list has been throughly researched online, from books, etc. I don't make this stuff up! lol.

    Diet Supplements: can be fed something from this list everyday, preferably fresh rather than the canned kind which can contain too much salt and sugar.

    Romaine Lettuce (other dark lettuces, not iceberg. Iceberg fills the crop but has nearly no nutritional value)
    Tomatoes (flesh only)
    Nigh Crawlers
    Cracked Corn/ scratch
    Bell peppers
    Eggs (scrambled or hardboiled chopped with shells on)
    Beans (overcooked)
    Feeder goldfish/minows/guppies
    Plain yogurt
    Brussel sprouts
    Butternut Squash

    Special Treats: Should only be fed on occasion, or in small amounts. Whgile your animal may loooove these, they can have negative health effects if fed in large quantities.

    Floating Koi Food (they love this stuff in their bath or pond, good protein)
    Cottage cheese
    Apples (applesauce is easily to eat)
    Bananas (no peel)
    Marigolds, pansies, clover (from a florist or homegrown, no pesticides!)
    Melons (cantaloupe, watermelon, honey dew)
    Turnips (cooked)
    Oatmeal (cooked)
    rice (cooked, very small amount)
    Beans (over cooked)

    Here, I'll edit the No-No's list so you know why not to feed it too them: (this also applies to geese) If you feed your animals something from the bad list, you may want to reconsider. Even if it seems your animals suffer no outwardly effects form these foods, remember that ducks/geese are prey animals and can hide pain/symptoms well. If you love your animals, it's better to be safe than sorry....

    Bread, other than being packed with carbs and some fat, does not contain any vitamins or minerals in any sufficient amount for a duck. It will make your duck over weight if fed in large quantities. It also it tasty so ducks eat it up fast, which can result in the impaction of their crops, which usually requires surgery to fix. Since there are sooo many other wonderful and healthy treats to give your animals, why risk health problems and death for a treat?

    The same as bread. And they have a alot of salt, which is very bad for ducks (you can see the first link i posted eariler). They are also harder than bread and ducks can easily choke on bits.

    As i posted eariler, reduced the amount of calcium absorbed.

    Cause diarrhea, and sometimes vomiting in birds. It has been found that prolonged exposure can lead to a blood condition called hemolytic anemia, which is followed by respiratory distress and eventual death.

    Too many carbs, possible impaction, just as bread. Limited amounts i guess are okay, but again, why feed potatoes when there's such a large list of good treats?

    TOXIC as i posted above.

    Seeds of any kind-
    While seeds can be used like grit, seeds do not digest well. too many seeds and the crop will fill with a material that can not be digested or passed. Then there's less more for good foods and digestive problems can occure. Some seeds, like apple and cherry seeds contain some cyanide. The flesh of the fruit is fine, but even small amounts of the seeds in ducks can cause death.

    Just as with many anaimals, chocolate is a fatal treat. It causes diarrhea and central nervous system problems, including ceisures.

    Sugar and Junk food of any kind-
    What happens when a human eats too much of these? they become overweight and have health problems with the hearts/blood pressure/ diabetes, etc. The same thing can happen to ducks, but they can not live with these conditions and die much younger. These are just plain NOT HEALTHY.

    Contain too many fats and can cause choking. They can not be chewed by a duck and are often swallowed whole. This can impact their crops and get stuck in a number of other places in the digestion process.

    Citrus (lemons, grapefruit, oranges, limes)-
    Citrus contains a lot of acid our stomaches can handle. A duck's stomach however can not and digestive problems can occur. Some citrus may be okay, but i personally wouldn't not risk stomach pain and suffering for my poor little ducks.

    Other than carbs, salt, fat from butter, popcor is incredibly hard for a duck to swallow causing choking. The kernals can get snagged in the esophagus causing choking and abrasions.

    Caffine and Alcohol-
    I know it seems crazy that anyone would give their ducks this. but it's worth mentioning. Alcohol depresses the system and caffine causes cardiac problems.

    Other intresting facts:

    Only feed your ducks/geese the flesh part of a tomato, the leafs and vines are toxic. Also, if feeding beans, they MUST be cooked, preferably over cooked. Uncooked beans contain a poison called hemaglutin. Cat nip and Mistletoe berries are also toxic to birds.

    If anyone has questions feel free to ask... Or if you have a food you normally feed your animals not on this list, please tell me about it and i'll do some research on it!
  2. chickensducks&agoose

    chickensducks&agoose Chillin' With My Peeps

    My ducks and goose and chickens have free access to my compost pile... and most everything on your list, good and bad, go in that pile.... I haven't had any problems yet.... is this because I have been lucky? or do they know what to eat and what to avoid?
  3. Cottage Rose

    Cottage Rose Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 24, 2008
    Mid west Michigan
    Thanks for the info! [​IMG]

    I give my waterfowl a good amount of surplus homegrown tomatoes, skins and all.
    Do you know whats wrong with feeding the skins?
    They LOVE tomatoes but I'm not about to peel them! [​IMG]
    I just pitch them like softballs from the garden and the birds come a-runnin'!
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2009
  4. stormie

    stormie Out Of The Brooder

    Jun 23, 2008
    Wonderful information!
  5. purr

    purr Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 30, 2008
    east freetown, ma
    thank you for the list I thought I was doing good but now I will do better. thanks again. [​IMG]
  6. TheDuckCrew

    TheDuckCrew Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 21, 2009
    awesome list. i've been looking for treats to give my ducks and the reasons why some things are bad. the only thing is, i can't get them to try anything! i've tried giving them oatmeal, they looked at it and walked away and then i gave them half a banana and they sorta looked at it once and then left it alone. they love their watermelon too much! i went out to take care of them once with red gloves on and they came RUNNING thinking it was watermelon...they were upset when they found out it wasn't
  7. farmertank

    farmertank Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 28, 2007
    Linden TN
    Thanks for the list [​IMG] This should be a sticky. I never knew you could feed floating Koi food...interesting

  8. Dances with Ducks

    Dances with Ducks Chillin' With My Peeps

    Last summer my cilantro went to seed (coriander) and my ducks chomped it down like crazy. [​IMG]
    [​IMG] I can't seem to differentiate between which of the following things are seeds and which are not.
    Most of them will grow if you put them in the ground and water them, just like seeds do.
    These are all things I have heard are recommended for ducks. [​IMG]
    black sunflower seeds
    whole grapes and berries (which have seeds)

    Personally I try not to give my family or my ducks anything containing soy. [​IMG]
  9. Mojo Chick'n

    Mojo Chick'n Empress of Chickenville

    Thanks for the list [​IMG]

    so far the only treat mine have gotten was some chopped cabbage - they lost their minds going for it [​IMG]
    They do prefer Bok Choy over regular head cabbage, though - the snobs [​IMG]

  10. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

    Nov 20, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    the seeds you listed sound okay, since they are more like a food/fleshy material rather than hard seeds. I can't find any info on Millet, and my ducks have had it before. I think they are small and are okay in small quantities.

    Peas, grapes, berries etc with seeds should be okay.

    I wouldn't reccommend sunflower seeds because they are so hard and they contain a lot of fat for one little seed. And ducks tend to gorge themselves on things they like, and they like sunflower seeds. If there are a few in their feed or a couple here and there should be okay...

    I can't find too definitive info on seeds since their are sooo many types. As a good rule of thumb i'd say no seeds on purpose. Meaning don't add seeds to their diet, but if they get into something with seeds in the garden, i guess that's okay. As i've said, with so many other treat choices i wouldn't risk it with some seed that may harm your animals.

    And as for tomato, the skin is fine! lol... I meant only the actual tomato, not the vines/leaves/ etc. Only the red parts. [​IMG] All of the tomato is fine!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by