Muscovy nests keep getting attacked

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Lugh, Sep 22, 2014.

  1. Lugh

    Lugh Out Of The Brooder

    75
    9
    41
    Mar 4, 2014
    Deerfield Beach, FL
    Hi all,

    I have a small flock of Muscovies that live around a body of water behind my house. Two of them were hatched and raised by me after their nest was attacked (guess the raccoon had had enough eggs to eat so he left two behind), and now my two, as well as the other two females, have started building nests around the property that keep getting eaten.

    I have set traps and caught seven raccoons and three opossums, but the eggs keep getting eaten. One of the ducks that I raised has built a nest in the shack that a built for them when they were younger, but last night the sole egg she had laid was eaten. The ducks live outside by the water's edge and absolutely hate being in the shack or the run attached to it, so I really can't pen them in at night, besides the fact that the shack and run aren't big-- they were designed for juveniles.

    Anyone have any tips on how to protect this nest other than wait outside with an AR15? The shack has a door that can be closed and latched. I was thinking of closing it at night and waking up early in the AM to open it so she can lay her eggs. Do you all have any suggestions?
     
  2. DemonicFowl

    DemonicFowl Chillin' With My Peeps

    269
    22
    71
    Sep 4, 2014
    South Eastern Mass
    Can you see any tracks near the nests to help identify the attacker? Could be something smaller like a mouse, rat, ferret or weasel. Have you tried coyote urine or something that deters rodents? Did you use their eggs as bait for the traps? You might be catching the wrong critter.

    lol I used to do the whole "wake up early to let them lay their eggs" thing... in the rain... 3 am... 5 am... lets find a new nest spot!... lets take forever to plop an egg out...let me stare at you *U* an not lay an egg...good times good times.

    You'd think the ducks, being scovies, would attack the intruder or maybe it eats the eggs when their not around.
     
  3. Buck Oakes

    Buck Oakes Chillin' With My Peeps

    ive had the same problem the summer going into eight grade and part of the year of 7th grade. but I've been raising ducks my self way before that so trust my opinion. at first it was just the eggs then it was just the females and eggs eaten later. a tone of my females were killed that year and i didn't know how to stop it.i caged my females and their eggs up in a lock space and the creature just dug under it like it was bad and my females went to lay farther away like in my neighbors garden and it found them there and i remember this one and this female was a solid white with a few black patches and when i found her still holding on for life she was black and red in blood. she died the next day. all my females protected their eggs and it ended up horrible. and the ones that didn't defend their eggs still died/ were eaten, pleas it in my opinion that you stay out one night and just watch and wait for the things and end its life, its for the best if you value your ducks. i hope it works for you unlike it did for me. but to also provide security like i did after all that happened get your dogs to lay outside on a warm night. check on them every thirty minus before bed. make little light flashes out side, get a brown african goose or chinese geese, ( we have buff geese and they work to) and the creature should be chased away or at least scared, air horns work to.
     
  4. Lugh

    Lugh Out Of The Brooder

    75
    9
    41
    Mar 4, 2014
    Deerfield Beach, FL
    Well in South Florida it's pretty much going to be either a raccoon or an opossum as I don't get ferrets or weasels around here and there are no rats. Problem is the soil is sand and we've been experiencing heavy rains that has washed out all tracks, but the only tracks I ever see are possum, raccoon, or cat.

    Bait is a can of tuna or marshmallows, depending on what I feel like putting out there. I was considering setting the trap right next to the shack to see if the pungent smell of tuna might overpower the smell of an egg...
     
  5. DemonicFowl

    DemonicFowl Chillin' With My Peeps

    269
    22
    71
    Sep 4, 2014
    South Eastern Mass
    Well in that case I would lock them up. Even if they don't like it. With luck they might give out a warning call that wakes you and you could deal with the situation there and now.

    But I do agree with Buck Oakes and sorry to hear about your ducks, Buck Oakes. My duck's housing is about 20 ft a way from my window. That I always keep open so I can hear them. One night a coyote dropped by around midnight and all I heard were my 2 cayugas literally barking at the intruder. I won't lie I laughed at how it sounded and never new ducks could do that. So I woke up and stared out the window an it was just chillin there staring at my ducks. I got so mad internally. I shined my light on it, that I always have to keep watch and say good night from my window, and told it to scram an it did. Then I went out side to comfort my barking ducks and kept the dog outside just in case. So far no problems.

    If that coyote ever returned I would probably jump out my window and chase it down. Even though I would probably break my ankle from jumping from that height... but then again I have guns...

    In fact I saw one the other day around 8 in front of my drive way. My sister was driving or else I probably would of ran it over. No body's gonna hurt my ducks... no body.
     
  6. Buck Oakes

    Buck Oakes Chillin' With My Peeps

    yeah but again mine are fine now and I've had a lot of babies and barley any attacks on my ducks just a few hear and there , its still a terrible feeling but they're not as often as they were about 4 years ago
     
  7. Buck Oakes

    Buck Oakes Chillin' With My Peeps

    same with me and foxes i see them in the road i gun it
     
  8. Buck Oakes

    Buck Oakes Chillin' With My Peeps

    you know those people who just think that they lost a duck, i don't understand them, for me its like I'm losing a child since i hatch mine, and its like I can't function for a day because like ya know i lost one of my babies and every time i lose one i just like cry, not meaning to sound sappy but its true :D
     
  9. Lugh

    Lugh Out Of The Brooder

    75
    9
    41
    Mar 4, 2014
    Deerfield Beach, FL
    Well apparently the culprit was another possum, and we've also answered the question as to what happens to a possum when hit with a 40 caliber hollow point at close range. Splat.

    What I've been doing is closing the pen at night and then re-opening it at about 6:15am, about 20 minutes or so before she comes to lay her egg for the day. Once she starts sitting on them, I'll lock her in with the eggs overnight and let her out early in the morning.
     
  10. Buck Oakes

    Buck Oakes Chillin' With My Peeps

    yay :)
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by