Mallard experts?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Calea, Aug 27, 2011.

  1. Calea

    Calea Out Of The Brooder

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    May 25, 2011
    Here I am again...I'm the one who rescued the mallard egg in May. I read all of you guys' duck posts often and am jealous of you who get to keep your wonderful ducks! I have cut back on feeding my mallard SIGNIFICANTLY and have even left for a week or so. He and his girlfriend do fine, but they always show back up for some food if they see me. I have a VERY hard time not giving them some; they enjoy it so much!! [​IMG] They aren't "surviving" on what I give them, so I know they aren't dependent on me. Here is my question: Will my feeding them once in awhile prevent them from flying south with the other ducks? If they did end up staying, my lake freezes over completely for several months in the winter...could I still somehow "keep" them? What would I need to supply? Would just offering a heated water bucket with food everyday be enough? Should I just completely stop feeding them now? I am really struggling with that because he really is so much like a pet to me. I absolutely love him and wish I could just keep him. He is so sweet and tame and I worry about something happening to him. He is "wild" enough at this point that I know a diaper would not be an option, even though he would LOVE to come in the house... [​IMG] I'm sure it is better for him to go south but it kills me to think of him gone... but it kills me to think of him out in three feet of snow too [​IMG]
     
  2. cat1994

    cat1994 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 12, 2010
    Southeast MO
    Will my feeding them once in awhile prevent them from flying south with the other ducks?
    I don’t think so not if you only feed them a lil
    If they did end up staying, my lake freezes over completely for several months in the winter...could I still somehow "keep" them?
    Hack a big whole in the ice so they can get some water and feed them and maybe give them a shelter
    What would I need to supply?
    Water, food, shelter, protection
    Would just offering a heated water bucket with food everyday be enough?
    Yeah you could do that but they may not last if predators are bad there and winters are harsh
    Should I just completely stop feeding them now?
    I would
     
  3. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 4, 2010
    San Diego
    Feeding them won't inhibit their migration. Studies have been done with feeder birds that show that bird feeders don't have any affect on when or if they migrate.

    However, I'm not 100% sure he will migrate at all since he was mostly human raised. But, maybe when the other ducks in the area start leaving, he may get the same idea.

    People feed the ducks at our lake and because of our mild weather, may live there year around. But, a good number of them migrate in and out of the area during fall and spring. Most come back to the lake every year, so yours may come back, too.
     
  4. Calea

    Calea Out Of The Brooder

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    May 25, 2011
    Thanks Cat and Desertdarlene, for your replies... I'll keep them cut back on the food (even though I LOVE feeding them!!) If they don't go south I will provide them shelter, food, protection, and love!! [​IMG] I sure hope that if they do go, they come back in the spring and have sweet little babies!!!
     

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