Indian Runner ducklings - what to expect?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by MerryMeridional, Mar 1, 2019.

  1. MerryMeridional

    MerryMeridional Songster

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    The excitement is building!:ya I ordered 5 black Indian Runner girls from Ideal Poultry and they'll ship March 20.
    Can anyone give me an idea of how much fermented food per day a runner duckling eats per day? Do you let ducklings freely feed or do actual meals? How many weeks do you feed them grower feed before switching to adult food? I have an 8lb sack of duck grower feed by Manna and I'm unsure if that will last or if they are ready to eat adult food fairly early. I plan to ferment a mix of barley, wheat, corn, oats, milo.

    I've been working diligently on the coop, will have to upload some pictures because I'm so proud of how it's coming along. But for now I must go work on the coop window. I just scored a replacement for $10, so now I've got to install it!

    My husband is totally over me talking about ducks, so now its your turn to hear my random thoughts and questions :gig
     
  2. crazy4ChickensNducks

    crazy4ChickensNducks Songster

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    Let the ducklings free feed, the back of the feed bag should tell you when to switch them
     
  3. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Loving this country life

    Or buy All flock still free feed but all flock is formulated for all poultry where chicken feed is not. Crumble is best for ducklings.
     
  4. chickens really

    chickens really Crazy Call Duck Momma

    I don't feed fermented feed and I provide water and feed 24/7 till 7 weeks and then they can go without till morning
     
  5. DuckyDonna

    DuckyDonna Crowing

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    I don't know a thing about fermented food but I've got 7 runners, some young, some older and I love love love them all! I'm looking forward to hatching some this spring too so I know how excited you must be. Be sure to post pictures of your coop soon!

    :yaHaha, my husband is the same way. He thinks I'm mentally ill with all my duck talk and he doesn't want to hear about it. Then I sit here for hours on this forum and he just doesn't understand. He can sit with his iPad and plays chess all day long but that's different!:idunno
     
  6. PaulX

    PaulX Songster

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    If you're 1st time duck owners you'll find they eat A LOT.
    If you've only ever had pekins you'll wonder why runners eat so little.

    I effectively let them free-feed for 12 hours during the day. Most ppl advocate free-feeding them at night too. If you want to do actual meals, do something like 10 meals a day, or something like 75 minutes between each meal.
     
    MerryMeridional likes this.
  7. DuckyDonna

    DuckyDonna Crowing

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    I agree with Paulx I don't put feed or water in the coop. They don't need it and all it does is make one great big huge mess! In the summer when it's super hot I will put 1/2 bucket of water in their pen but I tie the handle to the wall so they can't tip it over.
     
    MerryMeridional and quackiemama like this.
  8. MerryMeridional

    MerryMeridional Songster

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    I didn't even think to do that! Duh! :th That's a good idea and I will do that.

    That's an idea. I was hooked on the idea of fermented whole grains but the guy at the animal supply store today recommended the same thing. It's about $8 for a 50lb bag.... the lower cost is tempting... I will simmer on that idea for a few days. The duckling grower I bought is indeed crumbles so at least I am on the right track!
     
    Miss Lydia likes this.
  9. MerryMeridional

    MerryMeridional Songster

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    When they first arrive they'll be in the bathtub before moving them outside when they are a little bigger. Our winter popped late and there is still about 6-8" of snow on the ground with more promised next week. I like the idea of hanging water in the coop so they can dunk their heads but feeding outside in the run. I have heard they can make a supreme mess and hoping to minimize that.

    I am in good company then! I know he'll be playing with the ducks when they get here but for now it's just details to him. Just a few more weeks and he'll get bit by the duck bug too.

    I forgot to take after photos yesterday! This is sort of a rough before picture. It's an old kid's playhouse in need of repair and modification. I have the door fixed and installed and am almost finished with that window. I also sawed out part of the ceiling for a straw loft. The hinges I have for the window weren't the right style, then I went inside for the afternoon, then I realized that I had the right ones in another location but it was dark outside by then. I think a squirrel looking for nuts is my spirit animal.

    So glad I took out the ceiling during the cold winter. Holy wasp, batman. This is just one side, there is a lot more on the opposite side and other places.
     

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  10. DuckyDonna

    DuckyDonna Crowing

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    That's going to make a wonderful duck house just be sure to cover all the cracks and holes with hardware cloth NOT chicken wire! I wonder if that one window will be enough ventilation? Maybe someone else could chime in on that. Where the wasps are you could actually use for a vent, just cover it with HWC. In fact, after looking at the picture of the wasps again I'm wondering if you could cut out that whole triangle of wood and had that could be your vent. I hope that makes sense.

    You've got to have good ventilation or they will get frostbite. When they breathe they expel a lot of moisture and if it's got nowhere to go it makes the hay damp, it freezes and so do their little legs and feet. Where do you live? Wondering about how much longer you'll have winter.

    When I told you yesterday that they don't need food and water in their pen I wasn't thinking about them being babies. I always kept both in the brooder when they were little but once they were feathered out and they got to go to the big kid's house they didn't have either.
     
    MerryMeridional likes this.

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