I sense a runner in the garden

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by TheResidentialFarm, Jun 13, 2017.

  1. lomine

    lomine Crowing

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    Some don't start getting their voices till 6 weeks so things can still change.

    Keep in mind that ducklings will go through a phase where everything scares them, even the people who have been caring for them. Don't take it personal if they are scared of you. They should grow out of it as long as you keep calm while with them and keep handling them as you have.
     
    cheezenkwackers and Anabariful like this.
  2. Anabariful

    Anabariful Songster

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    In a similar situation.. bought two fawn and white Runners from TSC.. vent sexed them as two females so I bought 3 more ducklings sexed from Meyer (2 girls and 1 boy). Welp. The two fawn and whites are now 6 month old drakes doing their mating sounds with curly tails. Oy vey! Can't decide if I should keep one of the original fawn drakes because they are so charming. They come running up to me chattering away and follow me everywhere but the newest drake is bonded with the 2 new females but doesn't have as nice of a personality. :(
     
  3. TheResidentialFarm

    TheResidentialFarm In the Brooder

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    I have a video now! They are eating peas and get excited at various points. It's really hard to tell who is making which noises, but there is some video of each of them making noise when the others are quiet. The darkest (badger) and the one who continuously makes noise like water dripping are the ones we feel certain are males. The pale, dainty quacker must be female. Any ideas on the gender distribution would be super helpful!
     
  4. TheResidentialFarm

    TheResidentialFarm In the Brooder

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    Thanks, @lomine . I did feel like the 3 month old pullets we brought home in March were unreasonably terrified of us, and that ended on it's own eventually, so I thought something similar might happen with ducks. Four of the 6 easily eat from our hands while in an enclosed space, but when they have the whole 5,000 square foot garden, it's impossible to approach them. If you just take a step in their direction they run away screaming. It's rather disheartening, but then they practically climb into our laps for peas when we sit in their house...
     
  5. gingerviolinist

    gingerviolinist Chirping

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  6. lomine

    lomine Crowing

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    I think I can hear two different males. It's very hard to tell though.

    I have an old plastic container (think peanut butter jar type) that I use to scoop mealworms. Every time they get mealworms I shake the jar. They now associate the sound of the shaking jar with getting mealworms and will come to me from where ever they are; even if they can't see me. You could try doing something similar. Put something, like sand, in a jar and shake it when they get peas. Don't use anything that will be too loud, you don't want to scare them. Eventually they will learn. This trick has become very handy now that I have moved to a 5 acre lot.

    And try to stay lower to the ground when you approach them in the yard. This will make them more comfortable. Like when you are sitting on the ground in their house.
     
  7. lomine

    lomine Crowing

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    @gingerviolinist Why are you trying to separate them? Ducks are flock animals and don't usually feel comfortable when separated so they are going to get stressed.
     
  8. TheResidentialFarm

    TheResidentialFarm In the Brooder

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    This weekend the ducks made progress in their trust-building, and I spent enough time up close with them to notice that all the ducks except the two I think are males have green spots on their bills. They kind of look like algae spots. I looked this up and from previous posts, it appears that female runner ducks get these, which supports the 4 females to 2 males.

    However, from what I read, these green spots mostly appear when the ducks are getting ready to come into lay, and they are only 7 weeks old right now. They are pretty stout and fit though, so maybe they're developing quickly.
     
    Miss Lydia likes this.
  9. TheResidentialFarm

    TheResidentialFarm In the Brooder

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    And @lomine , we are getting meal worms today and I'm designating a treat cup!
     
    lomine likes this.
  10. lomine

    lomine Crowing

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    If you aren't careful with those mealworms you'll have a flock of ducks following you around all the time. :lau
     
    Ravynscroft likes this.

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