Is this ok for nighttime confinement and temp question?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by wonderpup, Feb 11, 2011.

  1. wonderpup

    wonderpup Out Of The Brooder

    73
    0
    39
    Jan 3, 2011
    NW Florida
    I've put our duck friend Daisy into a kennel in my garage for the night. This is the second night in a row. She seemed comfy last night and laid an egg, which made me weirdly excited lol. I wasn't sure she ever laid eggs because I had never seen one. Anyway, so that night's confinement and egg happiness led to a duck who wouldn't vacate the dog kennel she was in until late afternoon. At which point I basically had to chase her out b/c the garage was stinking and then she almost got eaten by a stray dog. Dang... [​IMG] I rescued her from the dog, no apparent harm done thankfully, and put her in the backyard for the rest of the day. Brought her back into the garage and into the kennel again for the night when it was almost dark. So first question, is that an acceptable routine assuming I can get her to vacate the garage earlier in the day.

    Second question is when should I worry that she is to cold? The temp right now is in the 32degree neighborhood, I don't see ice anywhere though. I know she stayed outside one night last week when it was in the 20's b/c I couldn't find her before I got dressed to go to bed. She was outside my bedroom window quacking though at 7am and woke the dogs up which means the whole house woke up [​IMG] I went out to check on her b/c I had to get up with the baby. She doesn't seem upset and I had to put some clothes in the dryer and wash some baby stuff (yay 3am with a baby with a tummy ach - super fun) so the laundry is going and will warm the garage up a few more degree's. It crossed my mind though that surely there is a point where cold is to cold right? Does she need a heater? What do I do? She's in a large 42in wire kennel. It doesn't freeze often in our part of florida but it does get a bit cold, like tonight. She's on some towels in the kennel but that's about all. I guess I could have covered the sides (there is another kennel on top so that part is already covered).

    Still kind of waiting to see what happens with her ownership status before spending the $$$ to build her a ducky paradise and see about a friend for her. Don't want to do it if I'm going to lose her to the incoming neighbor moving into her old house down the street. They are supposed to move in over the weekend, more than two weeks after she was abandoned by the old renters so we'll see what happens then. (I secretly hope they will assume she ran off or got eaten and not come looking for her)
     
  2. HamandLily

    HamandLily Chillin' With My Peeps

    125
    1
    91
    Feb 10, 2011
    England, UK
    Does your garage have windows? She needs plenty of sunlight to keep healthy and still lay her eggs.

    Does she have a secure area outside? You have to be so careful with predators [​IMG] She can;t stay inside all day because there is a risk of respiratory problems, but as a temporary measure, it should be fine, but she does need to spend lots of time outside, and lot sof time with you so she doesn't get lonely!

    I do recommend gtting a friend for her as soon as possible because not having a friend can sometimes make them ill! And they need another ducky to chat to!

    Proper bedding would be good to keep her warm - I recommend straw which you can probably pick up from a local pet shop. Ducks are pretty hardy when it come sto cold weather- if you've ever had a duck sit on your lap, you'll end up with sweaty legs because they can thermoregulate really well thanks to their down feathers! If you can't get to a pet shop, lots of towels and maybe a hot water bottle covered in a protective case (so it doesn;t burn itself) would be a good temporary measure!

    I hope you get to keep her [​IMG] Good luck!
     
  3. wonderpup

    wonderpup Out Of The Brooder

    73
    0
    39
    Jan 3, 2011
    NW Florida
    No windows in the garage, but hubby kicked her out early this morning. She was happy enough to go. I guess it was just yesterday she didn't want to go outside. I'm not sure of her exact age, I believe she is about a year old, she's been a single duck for that long which is I guess what happens when people get their kids a duckling for easter? I don't remember when Easter was last year lol. I could be totally wrong though and she could be older, but I sort of doubt it.

    Anyway, no she doesn't have a real area to call her own, she free ranges in the front yard. She used to free range the neighborhood but she's been limiting herself to our yard now that she has good food and care. The only other thing I can do is put her in my fenced off veggie garden (it's just dirt right now no plants) which is what I did yesterday after the doggie issue. I appreciate her fertilizing the area for me [​IMG] The only problem is MY dog's can easily jump that fence and had to be kept inside. She needs something else I know, but like I said I need to wait a week or two before I can feel comfortable doing that.

    Backstory here is that the neighbors moved and left her behind and somehow the new people moving into the house had to agree to care for the duck in order to move in ? It's been a couple of weeks though and no care given and they haven't moved in yet so IMO the poor duck was abandoned. The nosey nextdoor neighbor is the one who somehow found out about the yet to move in new people down the street. How she did that I don't know? She mentioned it to me on Tuesday, after we had purchased Duck food for her. Hummm, wonder if I can ask the neighbors to compensate us if they want to take her when they move in. Ruined pond pump, it seriously just croaked lol, food, care, time.... Probably not, but I wish.
     
  4. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,479
    60
    233
    Aug 4, 2010
    San Diego
    I would just keep her anyway and see if these new people ask about her. When they move in, tell them that she's with you and see how interested they are in keeping her. Chances are, they thought that she would be a decorative item and they wouldn't have to really feed or care for her. They might not really want her there, afterall.
     
  5. TLWR

    TLWR Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,837
    187
    224
    Jul 10, 2010
    southern AL
    I'm in southeast AL, right next to Pensacola. My 3 ducks are in a wood dog house (kit from Lowe's). The windows are just screen and the gaps for air under the roof.
    It hasn't been too cold for them yet. I do have a light out there that is on at dusk and goes off 4 hours later (will change that as our days are getting longer), but it isn't on most of the night, so it doesn't help keep them warm.
    As long as you can get her up off the concrete of the garage, I think she should be fine in there for the nights.
    What type of kennel - wire with a plastic bottom (or metal) tray? Or the plastic airline kennel?
    As long as there is a hard surface so she's not falling through, I'd put it up on a couple of bricks and just get it off the concrete by a couple of inches so the bottom isn't quite as cold for these cold nights we've been having lately.
     
  6. HamandLily

    HamandLily Chillin' With My Peeps

    125
    1
    91
    Feb 10, 2011
    England, UK
    You've really gotta be careful when you free range - there is always a risk of predators - I lost my Daisy to a fox when she was free-ranging.

    I think you should keep her anyway - it doesn't sound like the new neighbours will know what to do!

    Make sure she gets at least 8-10 hours of sunlight a day to keep her healthy!

    What breed is she? [​IMG] have you got a photo?
     
  7. wonderpup

    wonderpup Out Of The Brooder

    73
    0
    39
    Jan 3, 2011
    NW Florida
    It's a wire kennel with plastic bottom, it's directly on the garage floor but there is an airline kennel above it I can probably switch her to that. I groom dog's from home so the kennels are set up the way they are for a reason and I really can't elevate the big one with bricks. Better to just move her up to the penthouse. Probably will be easier to get her out in the mornings as well. Going this weekend to the flea market in search of a suitable kennel or dog house that I can put her in and keep her outside at night and turn into a little pen if we get to keep her.

    HamandLily, she's "just a duck" as far as breed goes I think. Some people on here thought she was a really bad WH and other figured she was a mix. *Shrugs* I don't care either way I was just curious at the time lol. I posted a photo in this thread >> https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=448707
     
  8. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

    1,725
    102
    214
    Nov 20, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Quote:As long as she gets the right kind of light in the right amounts, ducks can live indoors. I have six that permanently live in their own bedroom. They have a big long pen, and we regular the light by leaving the windows uncurtained and putting "grow lights" on a timer. You can get the grow lights at walmart, or you can use a full spectrum bulb. If you are afraid she is too cold, you can always get a small heat lamp and place it on one end of her crate, so she can move away from it if she gets too hot.

    Ducks only need sunshine for vitamin D, but if vitamin D is supplied through the diet (by adding a vitamin powder like Vital), they won't have any problems. My ducks only go outside when it's nice out (like 60-90 degrees) because they are spoiled and feisty. I'm trying to get them to play in the snow, but they won't have any of it. Respiratory problems do not occur from being inside. They only occur if the area she's in doesn't have good air flow or quality (like lots of dust, chemicals, etc). I have an air cleaner in the duck's room (for the dust, plus it has a baking soda add on the help with smells, i got it from Target) and an upwards pointing fan to keep the air flowing nicely. We also dust/sweep the room when the ducks are not in there with a swiffer thingie/broom. We used to use DE in their pen, but have stopped because it can cause respiratory problems in weaker birds. Our Norie duck is allergic to it.


    Until you can secure an area outside for her safe from predators, I would only let her out in the yard supervised (esp with that dog running around). If the renters have been gone for 2 weeks, i think it's pretty obvious they abandoned her. Poor thing.... Based on the fact she just started laying and someone just left her, my guess is that she was an easter duckling. They kept her until they had a good excuse to get rid of her (like moving), making her almost a year old, about the time a duck hatched around easter would start laying (Some ducks will lay at the end of the season, while others will skip until the next season).

    If the smells are making life in the garage a bit unbearable, I recommend a few ideas-

    A new garage pen, either in the form of-
    -a very large rubbermaid plastic container (usually around $20) and cover it with a light sheet at night. You can also drill some holes into the sides for air vents.
    -or cabinet frames or a wardrobe/bookcase from a cheapy furniture store like Ikea. Sometimes they even have them on clearance which makes them a good deal. Our current pen in made up entirely of Ikea cabinet frames, with some altering. I recommend putting some cheap tiles down on the "floor" (which would be the back of the cabinet frame or wardrobe) to help seal it. You can get tiles each at a home depot, or even Family Dollar sells them in half cartons (like $12). I'm no handy person, but I tiled several of these make shift homes for ducks and used a little caulk around the edges and wolla! a good nice permanent home for a duck to spend the night in. Our pen is of course much bigger, but we left the segments untethered to each other so it makes for easy cleaning. I'll have to take some pictures. We discovered this when Our Norie had to be separated from the other ducks when she had her allergic reaction. We had to make sure all the DE was scrubbed out and that she wasn't contagious for two weeks before she could go back. We used two 36in cabinet frames, with the openings facing each other, giving her a 3x5 pen. that lead to the idea of the segmented pen. I think their are 7-8 segments currently with plans of adding one or two "nest boxes" as a second level with ramps for them to climb.

    ETA- I HIGHLY RECOMMEND Horse stall pellets, or wood stove pellets (with no accelerant). That stuff is amazing. It expands to saw dust when wet, and dries out poop quickly, thus making it not smell. You will only have to change the area around her water the most often, while the other parts of the pen can be changed less often.

    As for an outdoor run, I'd get her a long dog kennel pen if you're not handy at building things. Make sure to place large rocks around the base of the kennel so nothing can dig under, place avian netting on the top so nothing can fly in, and put 1/2 in metal mesh/chicken wire around the base of the kennel so raccoons can't reach in.

    Feel free to PM me or contact my through my website in my siggy if you need help with plans or anything like that!
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2011
  9. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

    1,725
    102
    214
    Nov 20, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    Oh also, IMO, she looks like a Mallard/Snowy Mallard mix. Snowy Mallards need two of the genes that make them white colored. Your looks like it only has one snowy gene... that would explain the speculum feathers being so bright. Both mallards and Snowy's have super bright pretty speculum feathers. If she's around 2lbs, she's definitely mallard of some sort. Welshies can get up to 6lbs I believe so if she's bigger than 2lbs that would be a good indicator she's a welshie cross.
     
  10. MissusDee

    MissusDee Chillin' With My Peeps

    208
    1
    91
    Feb 7, 2011
    She pretty. You don't know what the new neighbors expect with her. They could have just said yes, thinking ducks are wild and care for themselves? Or not. Ducks are usually pretty good at keeping warm so that part shouldn't be a problem, the predators is the big one.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by