need help !!!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Elly, Nov 5, 2008.

  1. Elly

    Elly Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 18, 2008
    My daughter found three baby ducklings in a box beside a dumpster. She took them home and will be bring them to my home...I live in the country, she lives in an apartment. I have no idea how old they are...she said they were yellow and fluffy, no idea on what to feed or anything. I live in southern Ont. so our winters can be harsh and I'm not sure where it would be best to house these ducklings.
    If any one could give me some pointers on how to start and what would be involved that would be so very helpful. Right now I'm not sure if I would be able to keep them due to there needs, but I would surely do my best unless I could fine a better situation for them.

    I have a small barn that houses three horse, the space is very, very limited. I could try to move some hay and see if I could make a small corner for them. I have no pond or creek for them and I'm not sure if that is requirement.
    Again if there is anyone that could give me some tips/ideas I would really appreicate it.
  2. Fudgie

    Fudgie Hatching Queen - Got Fudge?

    I will send you a message tomorrow but right now I need to get to bed. I won't have all the answers but a good start...
  3. kodiakchicken

    kodiakchicken Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 18, 2008
    Kodiak, Alaska
    Well, if the ducklings are still fluffy that means they don't have their grown-up feathers yet and they still need to be kept warm. You can keep them in a large rubbermaid tote with straw, newspaper, or spruce shavings (no pine or cedar) inside your house right now. The barn would probably be a little cold. They will need water to drink, but not to swim in yet. Gamebird or duck starter crumbles is what they should eat right now. NOT medicated chick starter - ducks will overdose on the medication in the feed.

    Once they are fully feathered out they can be moved to the barn. Ducks actually handle cold weather quite well.

    Ducks don't have to have a pond or water for swimming, but they are much happier having water to play in. A simple $10.00 plastic kiddie pool from Wal-mart would thrill them to death. That's all mine have and they come and go from it all day long. Of course, now its winter and frozen over.

    The only biggie with ducks, which you'll learn quickly while they're in the brooder, is that they make HUGE messes. They poop a lot and it's watery and they will string water all over the place. It's just their nature. However, because I free range mine, they are able to share a coop with the chickens and don't make too big a mess. They each have their own "bedrooms" though, as chickens roost and ducks just waddle in and nest. A nice dog house with a locking door (for predator protection) would suit them quite well once they are feathered out and ready to live outside.

    Also, ducks have to have water whenever they eat. They scoop the food in their mouth and then wash it down with water, so their waterer's have to be big enough for them to get their bills in. They will choke if they just get feed and no water.

    Hope this helps! They are wonderful critters. Our 3 are adored by everyone.
  4. lowcountrypoultry

    lowcountrypoultry Chillin' With My Peeps

    Well for the babies you going to want to take care of them as you would baby chicks (kinda)

    Keep them warm, and "dry", and feed them non-medicated chick starter.

    Best of Luck!

  5. Fudgie

    Fudgie Hatching Queen - Got Fudge?

    First of all Well put KODIAKCHICKEN, I agree. I also keep mine inside until they get fully feathered. HOWEVER, I feed them when I put them in the tub to play for several reasons.
    1) they don't muck up their bedding with water and such,
    2) they poop in the tub while in there playing and grooming also eliminating the mess in the bedding
    3) they have a ball scooping and splashing and no one cares!

    I fill up the bathtub but leave a space at the back that does not have enough water in it to totally flip the food bowl. I then put their food down in the bowl that is harder to flip. Gamebird feed is the best feed for them. if you have to the NON MEDICATED chick feed is ok, but never feed them medicated. They eat and grab water and eat and grab water and eventually flip the bowl anyway. At that point it is a hay day scooping floating food and spitting out water and making a nice mucky mess in the tub. I let them "PLAY" with their food until they seem to be full and the food granuals seem to be pretty much gone. You can see their crops filling up to a nice round ball. I then let the water drain out of the tub part way, because when it is draining the particles kind of stick together and the ducks love running around and grabbing the little pieces like there is no tomorrow. I go ahead and totally clean out the tub after that and get all the gritty gunky stuff out and fill it up with lukewarm water and let them play and groom themselves. All total they are in there about an hour or so. I stay close because the babies cannot stay on the water for long without wearing out and they are not old enough to have all the oil glands that help keep them afloat. Towards the end of play time, I drain the tub to almost nothing, but leave a small pool near the drain so they can preen and dip their beaks in the water for a drink and get water on their beaks to help preen themselves. I then grab a hand towel and dry off their undersides and put them back in their rubbermaid container and turn on the heat lamp so they can finish drying themselves and preening.

    They will grow to love being picked up for the daily routine. Mine now try to fly out of the box when I open the lid to get them for their feeding and bath.
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 6, 2008

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