Moving ducks outside...and lots of other questions

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by sourmilknightmares, Aug 8, 2010.

  1. sourmilknightmares

    sourmilknightmares In the Brooder

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    Aug 8, 2010
    Hello everybody! I have two, month old Pekins that I'm moving outside today. I'm looking for suggestions as I really don't want raccoons munching on my little quackers. What I have planned for them is this: a 10 x 10 dog kennel with hardware cloth buried along all the edges as deep as I can and along the edges so nothing can reach into the kennel. I plan to use hardware cloth wired to the top to keep anything from coming in either. I also want to use a lock of some sort so no strange creatures (or people) take advantage of my ducks. My ducks will be located right beside my horse pasture and because hot wire is so readily available, I figure I can run a strand of hot wire around the perimeter of the outside of the pen, about knee high, just for good measure.

    Another big question I've had is how much am I supposed to feed my ducks? To this point I've kinda just been feeding them as much as they want ( a 16% layer feed). I can't really keep doing that when I'm only to be out taking care of them twice a day. Any suggestions? Any unrelated but helpful advice would also be appreciated!
     
  2. midget_farms

    midget_farms Songster

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    Apr 15, 2008
    Dunlap Illinois
    I'm new to ducks - but I've been doing chickens for a while now & have had my share of predators eat them up so I can help with the run design.

    Good idea with the hardware cloth. Galvanized chicken wire will work well, hardware cloth is even better. Make sure it is coated so it doesn't rust.

    Burying is a great idea but a ton of work. You can achieve the same results by laying 12 to 18 inches of the wire or cloth flat along the ground & have the same go up the fence.

    Digging critters will dig at the bottom of the fence. They are not smart enough to back up 2 feet & dig a chunnel under the wire. Instead they will try to get through the wire at the edge.

    Good to cover the run too as I have lost one to a hawk. But in the past three years its only been one.

    Good to have a good lock or latch as coons will pull up a chair & try to open the door all night. If its possible to get open they will open it.

    Hope this helps. Good Luck!
     
  3. chikky

    chikky Songster

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    Jun 13, 2009
    Glenmont, Ohio
    Everything sounds good. I've done the same with a dog kennel, then covered everything with hardware cloth, chicken wire on the top and 1/2 with a tarp over that for shade and buried bottom. One place to watch is the door on the regular dog kennel. I've had coons squeeze in at the bend at the top corner- an opening of maybe 2 inches. We hand made a door that fits much tighter- maybe a 1 inch opening, and no coons have gotten in. I keep the door shut with 2 of the bungie cords that have a ball at the end. Keeps the door quite tight.

    The electric sounds good too. If that is going in front of the door, that would keep critters from climbing up, although they may climb down if they can somehow get on the lid.

    Good luck! They sure are crafty.
     
  4. sourmilknightmares

    sourmilknightmares In the Brooder

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    Aug 8, 2010
    Update--They survived their first night outside!!

    Thanks for your help. Fortunately there are no trees or other tall structures that a predator could climb and then leap down on my pen. Even if something got on top, I doubt it could get in. We also poked all the loose ends upwards and it's like barb wire! Down the street my mom keeps a lone rooster in nothing more than a dog kennel with a tarp on top and he's been leaving there without incidence for a while now. Maybe -crosses fingers- we just have fewer predators around?
     
  5. midget_farms

    midget_farms Songster

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    Dunlap Illinois
    Again - more chickens for me - but I've had a real problem with coons in the past. Not so much this year, but there are so many you never know.

    Its best to keep them locked in at night - you may not lose one for 6 months, but then again - you could lose them all in 1 night.
     

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