new duck house question

elizasquid

Hatching
May 18, 2015
7
0
7
Central Arkansas
I'm new to this forum and new to ducks (really I'm new to fowl altogether). I've been lurking and reading for a while now and I have a copy of Storey's book on order. I have a privacy fenced city lot in a suburb and plan on getting 2-4 ducks. I think I want Muscovys, but I might change my mind after I read Storey's book.

OK, now for the point : ) I'm going to build my own duck house (I'm going to lock them in it at night and let them free range in my fenced yard during the day) and I'd like your opinions on substrate inside the duck house. I tentatively plan on making a slanted floor with a drain and a raised screen floor above that for easy washing. What do you all think about using smooth (rounded like playground gravel) pea gravel for substrate inside their house? I've seen lots about using it in a run, but not much about inside the house.
I'd love to hear everyone's suggestions! I'm very open to ideas!

Thank you!
 

silkiecuddles

FortheLoveofSilkies
Mar 1, 2015
4,616
1,543
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Florida
welcome-byc.gif

That sounds like a really well thought out duck house. Slanted floors, great idea. I think pea gravel would be nice, (they won't be walking on it in the house, will they?) especially if you plan on hosing it down every couple days. Their poo is extremely wet and nasty, so whatever you use, you need to clean or replace it every few days.

I've never had muscovies, they aren't the prettiest IMHO. I personally like Pekins on terms of sweetness, Khakis for eggs, mallards for eye candy (tho mallards are more wild, fly, and aren't as friendly). I have 4 runner ducklings right now, so I don't know how they are as adults on sweetness/eggs/flight.

Good luck!
 

elizasquid

Hatching
May 18, 2015
7
0
7
Central Arkansas
Thanks for the speedy reply! :) in my original plan, yes they would be walking directly on the pea gravel and I thought maybe in the winter I might need to add something warmer over the top. I thought pea gravel would be good because I could hose the nastiness right down and out as often as I needed. Should I plan differently, maybe play sand or construction sand on top of the gravel?
And I think I want Muscovys because they are such efficient foragers and I thought their large size might deter some of the smaller hawks (and my cat-i don't want kitty getting brave). And because they're quieter than some other varieties.

Keep those experienced thoughts coming... :)
 

silkiecuddles

FortheLoveofSilkies
Mar 1, 2015
4,616
1,543
347
Florida
My duck's pen (chain link dog kennel, cause it was available) just has plain ole dirt as the floor. Hay didn't absorb the water (ducks are VERY messy) so I decided to just leave it dirt.
What kind of house are you thinking? LIke will it be big enough to house their water and food, or will you only let them have water and food when they're out each day? I only have water and food in my pen because its a dog kennel, which is enclosed, but not solid walls
 

elizasquid

Hatching
May 18, 2015
7
0
7
Central Arkansas
I was thinking a 3'x4' house, like a dog house but with the 2 level/sloped floor like I mentioned earlier. I don't plan on putting the food in their house and I'm undecided about water... I've read some really neat ideas in how to keep water inside without having a swampy mess.

Maybe if I put a nest box with some hay in 1 corner? We don't eat a whole lot of eggs, though. So that's really not so important. I really need to know if they can be happy on a pea gravel floor inside their house.
That post was helpful, thank you: ) and I'll read more about Pekins
 

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