Is there a way to keep a duck brooder dryer?

luvmychix

Songster
11 Years
Sep 8, 2008
608
1
139
Mine are always playing in the water... I know this is natural for them and i dont mind it as much when it is warmer, but is there a special waterer or something that can be used to help keep the water messes to a Minimum?
 
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Katy

Flock Mistress
12 Years
Jun 29, 2007
16,317
69
331
Kansas~50+ yrs of chickens
No magic waterer that I ever found. Using puppy pee pads in the bottom helps cut down on the mess somewhat. They still have to be changed regularly, but they keep it somewhat drier.
 

MandyH

You'll shoot your eye out!
12 Years
Apr 16, 2007
3,277
20
231
Elvis' birthplace......
Sand. I brood all my ducks and chicks in galvanized water troughs and I put about 6-8 inches of sand in the bottom. This is great for keeping down the stink, and the mess and when it's time to clean them out you can take a cat litter scoop and get out the mess. When it gets horrible, I dump the whole mess in the garden and start over.
 

RockyToggRanch

Songster
11 Years
May 22, 2008
1,712
10
171
Upstate NY
Haaa..Ha.ha.ha....sorry. I have 2 totally disgusting ducklings in a brooder myself. Everyone said they were stinky, but I just thought..."woosies". Let me tell you! They freaking stink!

But anyway...I put their waterer into a plastic shoebox. Then a small log along side. They can get to the water, but the water can't get to the bedding. It has helped some. OOOOhhhh....I can't wait to get them outtta here. Never again in the house.
 

luvmychix

Songster
11 Years
Sep 8, 2008
608
1
139
well...I have more than just a few ducklings..... I had been saying i wanted some baby ducks of different kinds that i didnt have so My husband thought he would be nice and suprise me and for my birthday (March 18th) decided he would order me some baby ducks!..... so he did and i have to say i was suprised to get 50 ducklings in the mail last week! I have them in an outside brooder that is a 4'X8' and later the devider can be taken out to make it an 8'X8'..... I have 3 lights on them at this time and the brooder has a wire bottom in it and so to keep some of the cold wind out, I put some hay in the bottom of it for them. (is this ok?).... most of the water drains out but the hay around the waterers stay wet and with the cold snap we are having i was thinking the ducklings may get too cold if the hay says wet..... I have also added some plastic around the leggs of the brooder to help keep out the cool air as well.... I have also made sure to keep good ventalation in the brooder as well... the temp inside is staying 75*-80*... if the lights in there dont let off enough heat, we have a heater hooked up to kick on (they can not touch the heater either)................... i just know i can not bring that many ducks in the house... so, i was just wonder if there was anything else i could do to keep them a bit dryer in this nasty, rainy weather?
 

shaylee

In the Brooder
11 Years
Jun 4, 2008
75
0
39
Hamilton, Il
Mine drink from a waterer. I let them have 'bath' time, but not open access to water all the time, except for drinking. (I lost two ducklings last year, they drowned somehow in their water tub, though I thought it was fairly easy for them to get in and out, I will not make that mistake again)

Maybe stick a 'tub' inside of a bigger tub, put water into the smaller tub, any overflow will go into the bigger tub. Take everything out after a few hours of fun or if you feel comfortable, leave them in. A little ramp for them to get in and out. Enough space to catch overflow, but not so much that a duckling gets stuck between the tubs (unless you bend hardware mash into the open area.) Just a thought.

Wish I had a tub in tub for my two kids, its like seaworld when they get tub time.
 

AK-Bird-brain

I gots Duckies!
12 Years
May 7, 2007
1,030
6
169
Sterling, Alaska
I use a empty milk jug as a waterer. About 3 inches from the bottom cut out a half circle (flat side down). Only fill the jug about 2 inches. Set the jug in a pan. The majority of splashes don't make it out.
 

Omniskies

Songster
11 Years
Mar 7, 2008
1,064
22
191
Missouri
Water bottles.

Seriously. Water bottles. It's like God's gift to people who raise ducks and geese.

They love playing with shiny things, so teaching them to drink out of a water bottle is easy. Just put it in there and let them play with it. They'll get the hint. Goslings seem to be a whole lot easier to train than ducklings, and with bantam duckings I'd let them have a water dish for the first few days until they're stronger before forcing them to learn how to use a bottle.

For ducklings use an 8oz water bottle. Anything larger tends to be too much for them. For goslings you can use an 8oz initially, but within a week's time they will happily drink out of a 16oz. As they get older you can move up to a 32oz.

I have never, ever had any issues with ducklings or goslings getting food stuck in their bill. I do put in a dish of water from time to time for them to play in (just to dabble - not to swim) which probably helps. Otherwise they get the water bottle.

I've also noticed that having a water bottle in with goslings helps cut down on them nibbling on one another's down. It seems to give them something to do.
 

luvmychix

Songster
11 Years
Sep 8, 2008
608
1
139
Water bottles.... GREAT idea!!! so what do you all think, could I put my 6 goslings in with my ducklings then? they are about the same age (just a few days difference)... but the goslings are a good bit bigger, like 2-3 times the size.....
 
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Omniskies

Songster
11 Years
Mar 7, 2008
1,064
22
191
Missouri
Ah...you may be able to get away with it. Definitely watch them to make sure everything is fine.

Goslings and ducklings get hyper and start running back and forth in the brooder. They don't let a silly thing like a sleeping or eating body get in the way of where their legs are taking them and will bowl over anything in the path. This isn't a big deal if they're all the same size, but ducklings may get jostled around too much.

Goslings also like to nibble. You really, really should provide goslings with something nontoxic to chew on. If they don't have anything to chew on then they turn to gnawing on one another. This can be a problem between goslings - if they started to gnaw on a duckling it'd become messy fast.

If your brooder is large enough and you give them enough to do then you can probably get away with it. I have three Indian Runners in with my goslings right now. But the Indian Runners are nearly a week old and the goslings are just a few days. There's a size difference, but the ducklings are older and sturdier, so I'm not worried. In another week when the goslings have doubled their size I may have to separate them out
 

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