I am a new Pekin duck owner!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Finntheduck, Jun 24, 2016.

  1. Finntheduck

    Finntheduck Just Hatched

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    Jun 24, 2016
    Hi there! My name is Ricky and I am 16 years old. Around a month ago I purchased 2 Pekin duck eggs off eBay. I incubated them, and only one made it. My little ducky hatched three days early - three days ago. I can not express how much I love this little guy, it is the best decision I have ever made. This little ducky is what I needed in my life as it gives me a sense of purpose.

    Right now, I have Finn in a big plastic tub with a towel and heat lamp. I have a towel nest made, and the heat lamp facing the towel nest. I have chick starter as food (high in protein - non medicated), and a small bowl of purified water.

    I take Finn out every day, many many times and play with them (I am guilty of falling asleep next to them.. I know.. it's dangerous - I try not to). I can barely go anywhere without Finn otherwise the whole house gets a ear full (however, I have a recording of my voice that I play when I need to leave the room - it makes em think I am still there, and they do not freak out). I make sure they get enough heat, enough sleep, enough food/water, and plenty of love and fun! Finn loves to play with the mouse on my laptop screen haha!

    I have some general questions that I hope some experienced duck owners can help me with!

    1)

    There is such a debate on when it is okay to allow ducklings to start swimming. I was considering allowing em to swim in *SHALLOW WARM WATER*. Finn loves playing in his small water bowl, and I always have to dry em off and put em under the heat lamp. When do you recommend I let Finn swim in a highly supervised, warm shallow water bath?

    2)

    Is there any SAFE way to tell the sex of Finn? I know it is very dangerous to check the sex of em, so I have yet to attempt it (and will not attempt it if there is no safe way).

    3)

    Everyday I take Finn outside and go for a SHORT walk with em. Finn chases after me. Sometimes I do it just to tucker em out so they will sleep and I can have a break lmao. I want him to stay healthy and entertained. I do not keep em outside with me long, and I watch Finn VERY carefully. I understand their need for warmth. Is that alright?

    ---

    I have done so much research and considerations as I want to be a successful duck daddy. Do you have ANY suggestions for me?

    Thank you!
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Sounds like you are doing well. As with most things, we duck keepers do not agree on every detail, so go with your gut.

    I started letting my Runners have tub time at two days old. Their first tub was a 2 inch deep pan. I put water about one and a half inches deep, the same temperature as the brooder. After a few minutes they were tuckered out, and I dried off the ones that did not start preening right away. I would make sure the water was about belly deep for the first several weeks, and same temperature as the brooder.

    At this point, I would wait a few weeks and voice sex. Girls are much louder than boys.

    Sounds like the walks are good - just make sure Finn is safe from predators, including dogs and cats and clumsy people (sometimes ducklings are injured by human feet, or being dropped accidentally).

    Here is a newsletter with an article on enrichment activities for ducks.

    As long as you can devote your time to Finn, that's good. There is a concern that since ducks are flock animals, being without their bff (that's you) can really stress them. At the same time, there are a few cases where single ducks seem to thrive. So please watch carefully - Finn may need a duck buddy. Unbreakable mirrors can be a help, also. I had two recent adopted ducks join us, and while they were in quarantine (in my studio), they really liked having a mirror - even though there were two of them, they seemed to want more of a flock. They are now with the others, in a nice flock, and are very content.

    And they still like me!
     
  3. RusticGal

    RusticGal Just Hatched

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    May 20, 2016
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    Awe, sounds like youre doing great. This is my first time raising ducks as well and it has been such an adventure. I first let my little ones splash around in a big bowl when they were 3 days old. They LOVED it. We eventually graduated to a small pool. Id let them swim around for as long as they seemed to want and then id take them out. They also used to run around in the grass. I am now having to deal with only having one of my ducks left because the other two were attacked and died. So my duck is still very sad and gradually starting to act more herself. I am now more protective than ever. She is almost never out of my sight and if she is, shes locked in a safe place. I have to talk and sing to my duck to calm her down. She really likes singing.

    Just enjoy your time with Finn! Take lots of pictures because they grow so fast!! I also fed my babies grass and eventually some safe fruits and veggies like watermelon, squash and radish.

    <3 <3 <3
     

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