New to ducks, have a few questions

mistydbowen

In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 7, 2012
43
1
34
Hey everyone!
When we ordered our chicks this year my husband just added a couple ducks to the order because he thought they would be fun. We didn't know anything about them. Well now they're living in the brooder with our chicks. Everyone seems to be getting along fine. But by now the ducks (2 weeks old) are about 4 times the size of the chicks even though they're the same age.
They also seem to be too hot. They pant quite a bit. I moved the heat lamp to one side of the brooder so they can get away from it if they way, but they don't. They just lay right underneath it and pant.
So I guess I was wondering when can they go outside? I could try to set up a separate brooder for them on the porch. Their coop is still under construction. The temps right now are 70s during the day, 40s at night. Maybe I should just move them during the day.
Thank you for the help!
 

jtbrown

Songster
8 Years
Mar 30, 2011
1,795
25
179
Southeastern Ohio
Hi, we are new to ducklings too. I originally thought we would brood together, but those little guys get big quick. I am surprised you lasted this long. Mine mucked up the water so bad!

They still need heat, but a safe porch brooder would be good as long as they have heat, good ventilation, but no drafts.m My ducks are what I think of as full size at 6 weeks, may not technically be but if I had never had them and saw them I would assume they were grown ups! I know they are only 6 weeks old, but my oh my they are huge!

Also, I am integrating them in with my chickens, but their water is outside. Those silly ducks would sit in corner of coop and pant instead of walking 6 feet to the water (off heat now), I am not sure they are real bright, but hey are cute. Hope this helps!
 

mixitup

Chirping
7 Years
Apr 10, 2012
120
2
91
Ontario, Canada
Here is a link that was a link that was given to me.

http://www.feathersite.com/Poultry/BRKRaisingDucklings.html

It's pretty informative. But, IMO I would say they are much too hot. When I first started reading (I've done this before, just not for a couple of years and have forgotten everything) heat starts at 98 degrees for 10 days and then reduce by 5 degrees every week until at 70 degrees. (Everyone has a different opinion on temps. I just see if they are huddled or panting and go from there. If they are huddled, they don't have enough heat, if they are panting, they have too much heat. You may have to sneak up on them when they are quiet to see if they are huddled or not. Mine will huddle if someone goes near their little pen, but if I sneak up on them, I can tell they are all over the place.) Mine are moving around and two nights ago noticed they were panting. I had two 100 w heat lamps on them, so I shut one off and they seem to be doing better. I will probably raise the remaining heat lamp tomorrow as well. It warms up fast and ducks seem not to be able to take the heat as well as chickens. And, they seem to dehydrate very, very quickly.

Since the weather is warming up nicely here, I will be moving them out to the garage probably on the weekend. They will be about 2-2.5 weeks old then. From what I understand, they can go outside at about 3.5 weeks. Not sure if I helped you out or not.
 
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mistydbowen

In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 7, 2012
43
1
34
Thank you, that site is very helpful. I guess I have to figure out a new waterer. They're still using the chick waterer. I have been letting them swim in the tub a little bit every day, but I'm really not sure how long I should leave them in there. They really seem to like it. Next week I will try moving them out to the porch, with a light depending on the weather.
 

mistydbowen

In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 7, 2012
43
1
34
Just remembered, there's something else I wanted to ask. My ducklings came unsexed. What happens if I have 2 boys or 2 girls? Do they get sad without a mate?
 

tbitt

Songster
Apr 28, 2011
944
9
159
IL
Since you only have two, they should get a long well. You do not need a boy for the girls to be happy. If they are both boys, they should do well together since they have no girls to fight over and because they will be raised together
 

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