Muddy duck run

Esme2345

Chirping
Jun 16, 2020
56
29
58
Hello, I live in England and it rains a lot especially this time of year. My duck run is like a muddy bog because they absolutely love digging and putting their heads in the puddles looking for treats. I was thinking of completely redoing my run and possibly lining it with pea gravel. Does anyone have any experience with it and is it safe for ducks feet, also I’m worried they might think it’s a snack. Or should I look into using wood chips? Any help would be appreciated 🙂
 

21hens-incharge

Moderator
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
26,786
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Northern Colorado
I wouldn't want them having to step on small stones all day long. Then there is the poop factor. I am not sure it wouldn't end up all stinky.

How big is the run? Can you add a roof?

For my pool I dropped it into a ducky deck, installed plumbing so I can drain it away from the run and it has worked wonders to help keep things drier.

Of course I plan to move things around and tweak it this spring.

For the ground I got tons of leaves from neighbors and my own yard. They have managed to pack those a little to well. I am adding large flake pine shavings and will be looking for more chunkier materials this spring too.

Maybe pea gravel around the pool and water dish with a few big flat stones to stand on can help there.
 

SolarDuck

Crowing
Jan 31, 2020
1,909
4,518
431
Yeah I would imagine that having them step on stones all day could cause some bumblefoot. They should be fine as long as they have a good amount of dry bedded area as well, and yeah pine shavings are great for absorbing extra moisture
 

NingwoodHill

In the Brooder
Dec 15, 2020
19
35
36
Or should I look into using wood chips? Any help would be appreciated 🙂

We've just got some runners and because of the ridiculously wet winter we're experiencing in the UK I've put them on a wooden platform, filled with woodchip.

We are supplementing with grit, as they won't be able to forage for any and I'm rummaging the wood chip about a bit day by day, to try and keep it fresh.

I would have liked to have given them more run to fiddle with, but with the avian flu lockdown, they're only getting a small, covered run for now.
 

KaleIAm

Free Ranging
6 Years
Jul 13, 2015
3,220
9,408
701
Carnation, Wa
I tried pea gravel once. It worked wonderfully, for humans only. We put pipes under the pea gravel that were covered in canvas cloth. I hosed off the gravel daily and it was so easy and clean!

Alas, my poor ducks' feet were not as happy as I was. My vet told me to get that gravel and all rocks, boards, and even wood chips out of my ducks' environment. We entirely redid their, "run." Now they have a huge aviary with a front and backyard. When the grass in one gets sparse we grow back the grass in the other. No more bumblefoot since!!
 

21hens-incharge

Moderator
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
26,786
111,283
1,722
Northern Colorado
Ya know....I read a while back about using astro turf with ducks.

It may help to cover pea gravel with that. I think it shouldn't be the cheap stuff but more along the lines of what is made for playgrounds and dog kennels.
 

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