New Duck owner in search of help

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by CPanell, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. CPanell

    CPanell New Egg

    Dec 19, 2012
    Hi everyone. I just bought a new duckling and an adult duck from 2 different places as a Christmas present for me husband. We are very new to this farm stuff before this point we only had a Basset Hound. I don't remember when I bought my duckling if they said she was 3 weeks or 3 months old. They said her feathers will be coming in in the next few weeks and she should be kept in the house till them. She sleeps in our room since it is the warmest room in the house but our adult is very lonely and I can tell she wants a friend. When can I safely put our duckling outside? We live in Washington and its been in the 30's at night. and 50 durning the day. Im really enjoying being a parent of these guys they are bringing a lot of joy to us. I don't want to risk putting her out to early. Do you think I can put her out for a few hours during the day and then just bring her in at night?
  2. momo18clara

    momo18clara Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 15, 2012
    Congratulations on your new ducks! I would say that your duckling is probably 3 weeks old, because she would have all her feathers if she was 3 months old. At 6 to 8 weeks she should be able to withstand temperatures down to 50F if she has a good shelter, but with temperatures down in the 30s at night, I would probably wait till shes at least 7weeks old and then start taking her outside for some of the day and bringing her inside at night till she`s about 9 weeks old. Make sure they have a good shelter and protection from predators(especially at night). If it was me and I could get another adult duck, I would, because your duckling wont be able to stay outside with your other duck for a while.
  3. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    Yeah if it's not feathered no way can it be 3mths.. why did you buy a single duckling and a single adult? ducks need company they are flock animals and it's best they have company of their own kind.

    Personally? can you get another duckling and an another adult bird. What is the adult? a drake(male) or duck(female) are they the same breed(duckling & adult bird)

    Without a heat lamp and other birds to keep warm your going to have issue with the duckling being kept outdoors even in shelter. I really think adding to your flock now would be best...

    I wouldn't worry about not having livestock before, everyone has to start somewhere lol Besides if you have a dog you have a basic idea of animal care and the responsibility involved.

    Forgot to say! [​IMG]
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2012
  4. countrygirl74

    countrygirl74 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 19, 2012
    Northern Arizona
    We are fairly new to ducks ourselves! We had them when I was a young child, but of course, didn't remember a thing about actually taking care of them. I will say that if I do babies again, I will not do it in the winter because we have to keep them in so long! Too cold! I love them, but it is such a mess having them in the house for that many weeks.

    Anyway, if you can, I would definitely try to get another duckling - they really don't like to be alone and will probably cry a lot. In the meantime, adding a towel or old stuffed animal can help. Just prepared to change it out or wash it now and then as she/he will poop everywhere. We had a single duckling for about 2 weeks because the others we ordered with her didn't survive. We found that adding something soft helped her to not be quite as lonely until the other 3 arrived.

    If you absolutely cannot add anymore ducks as someone else suggested (1 adult to the adult duck and another duckling to the current duckling), then it would be best to rig something up so that they can see, smell each other, etc. I wouldn't put the adult with the duckling as it's likely to hurt it at this point. I even had trouble with my 2 week old beating up on the brand newly hatched ones when they arrived and had to slowly introduce them.

    My ducks are now just about to reach 8 weeks of age and they are outside all day with temperatures ranging from 30-60 over the past few weeks, but they are still inside at night because we are dropping into the teens and a couple of them are still working on their feathers. I plan on putting them out full-time in about 2-3 weeks. They are currently living in the bathtub with straw at night, which is sooo much fun to clean out every morning. NOT! : ) But, I would rather wait until I know they can handle those low winter temps before I put them out. They grow fast! I basically have 4 adult ducks in my bathtub, no more duckling size!

    I tell you this to help you be prepared that you will have a lot of cleaning to do for a while before they can go out. Of course, if you end up getting another adult duck, the two adults can go out - but the baby will be with you for a while yet.

    One thing that is very important is to get niacin for your duckling. I had to get mine from our health food store because none of the other stores carried regular niacin - don't get the "time release" or "no flush" kind. I get mine in 100mg capsules that I break open and dissolve in a gallon jug - 100 mg to a gallon of water. Give her/him this water for her drinking water all the time.

    Other than that, have fun with your new additions! If you get an old towel that you don't mind the duckling soiling, he/she will love to sit on your lap and sleep. Mine would even jump onto my lap if I was sitting on the floor and patted my leg and called her.
    I've learned a lot on here about raising ducklings and the rest has been by trial and error. Feel free to ask as many questions as you need!
  5. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I would bring the adult in, and set up a side-by-side indoor pen and see how it goes. The youngster will grow quickly. It is not all hearts and flowers when ducks get to know each other - okay, there are stories of love at first site, so don't worry - but adults cannot be trusted with younger ducks.

    Have you read the stickies? Lots of good info there.

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