Looks like I'm going to celebrate New year's with some cold ducks.

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Tevyes Dad, Dec 29, 2014.

  1. Tevyes Dad

    Tevyes Dad Leader of the Quack Premium Member

    2,604
    839
    256
    Apr 22, 2014
    Montana
    [​IMG]

    The temps are dropping again. Since many ask about the hardiness of ducks on these pages, I figure this is a good example. When this picture was taken today, it was 0F, cloudy with a brisk wind. The ducks came in the house (11F air temp.) an hour early and as you can see, most opted not to be under the heat lamp (at 4-1/2ft. off the ground that spot is warmer, but in no way hot). In fact 2 are by the open door. At these temps, if the sun is out and it's not too windy, they will be running around having fun. At -20F, they spend most of the day in the house (then around -9F), but only spend a little time under the lamp.

    I think the biggest thing they need is shelter from the wind. The house has plenty of ventilation, but all the holes are up high so they don't get a direct draft.
     
    1 person likes this.
  2. cogoose

    cogoose Out Of The Brooder

    48
    4
    36
    Oct 26, 2014
    It is cold here, as well. At 5 pm, I went out to put everyone away, and lo and behold, my bonded goose pair was in their nest box. The ducks and the random goose, were in their nest box. It is freezing, and expected to get into -15 F territory tonight. Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.
     
  3. TracyLovesDucks

    TracyLovesDucks Chillin' With My Peeps

    527
    31
    138
    Mar 25, 2014
    Northern Colorado
    Good to hear your ducks are handling the cold well.

    I'm surprised to not see any of your ducks fluffed up or shivering in the pics. My ducks do that a lot.

    It's been cold here too. For the last few nights, it has dropped to 0F. Today was the coldest day yet, with temps below 10F and snow on the ground. Tomorrow will be even colder.

    I've left the heat lamp off so my ducks can handle the cold their own way. They have been doing pretty good, but after today they are starting to seem pretty worn down... normally they eat more food than normal in the cold, but today they were too cold to even walk over to their food and stand long enough to eat it all... so they actually ate less than normal. I've decided to turn the heat lamp on tonight and keep them in most of the day tomorrow. The weather will be back in the teens/twenties after that and the heat lamp will stay off.
     
  4. patolocoeggs

    patolocoeggs Out Of The Brooder

    44
    3
    24
    Feb 22, 2013
    Lake Orion, MI
    In MI last winter the arctic vortex allowed the wind chill to get to negative 30 for weeks. My ducks knew to go inside their shelter during the coldest times. They are extremely hardy animals but do need to get out of the wind, snow and ice storms. Mine would only come out to eat and drink and then back inside during the worst cold times. We are ready this winter with a larger and better ventilated shelter hut for them. Can't wait till Spring to see them happy and swimming in the pond again :)
     
  5. TracyLovesDucks

    TracyLovesDucks Chillin' With My Peeps

    527
    31
    138
    Mar 25, 2014
    Northern Colorado


    Brrrrr!!! Man oh man that's too cold for too long :)

    Do you use heat in the hut?
     
  6. Tevyes Dad

    Tevyes Dad Leader of the Quack Premium Member

    2,604
    839
    256
    Apr 22, 2014
    Montana
    @TracyLovesDucks No "heat". They have a heat lamp which makes the house about 5 degrees warmer than outside but gives them direct radiation if they want it. Mostly they pop in the light for a short time even if it is too cold (and windy) to go out. If they start huddling under the light, I'll figure out something more for them. (sort of grown-up brooder logic) :)
     
  7. Tevyes Dad

    Tevyes Dad Leader of the Quack Premium Member

    2,604
    839
    256
    Apr 22, 2014
    Montana
    @patolocoeggs We bottomed out about -20F real temp. Dont know with wind chill... 10 mph winds or so with 15-20 mph gusts. oh! I know! #@!&*! cold! :D
     
  8. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

    7,538
    345
    311
    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    We were -10C the other day, with a windchill topping that to -18C, my calls swam. Most of my ducks took to the trees, we have this very large and tight cedar hedging that towers into the sky, it is rather protective so that is the choice they went with, a few went in buildings on/off..

    Basically, as you say if allowed access to forms of shelter(which take many forms) and good feed/water, most will be fine. I heat nothing here.
     
  9. patolocoeggs

    patolocoeggs Out Of The Brooder

    44
    3
    24
    Feb 22, 2013
    Lake Orion, MI
    Yes, heat lamps used during the coldest months.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by