New to ducks help please!!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by kcmiddle, May 1, 2016.

  1. kcmiddle

    kcmiddle New Egg

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    Sep 10, 2015
    Hello I am new to having ducks. i have had chickens for a little over a year now and would like to know if there is anything special i need to know about them compared to chickens. i was just surprised with 2 golden 300 ducks and have them with my 2 new blue laced red wyandotte.
    .[​IMG]
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    @kcmiddle
    Welcome!

    The first post in this thread has loads of information https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/750869/raising-and-caring-for-ducklings#post_10611711

    If you can buy or borrow a copy of Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks, that helps, too - there is a chapter on brooding ducklings.

    The water management is key to their health and your enjoyment. They are waterfowl - and have a unique relationship with water.

    Please look at these links.


    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/641902/created-a-water-saver-for-my-duck-brooder

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/679433/water-water-everywhere/10

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/858161/feed-water-solution-for-brooder#post_12901321

    http://frankiemakes.blogspot.ca/2012/06/watering-solution-for-ducks.html

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/259876/do-your-ducks-have-water-at-night/10#post_13568197

    post number 8 from this
    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/959603/ducklings-getting-stuck-on-their-backs#post_14939819

    https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/969751/help-baby-ducklings#post_15125952


    They may need supplemental niacin - if they are eating chick starter. Some ducklings develop seizures and leg problems and in almost every case I have seen for six years, adding niacin - whether plain niacin (not no-flush or timed release), part of B complex vitamins or brewer's yeast (not baking yeast) - resolves the problem within days most of the time.
     
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  3. HennyPenny2

    HennyPenny2 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Yes there are differences in raising ducks from chickens. Congrats on adding ducks! I have kept chickens for years and added a couple of ducklings and have enjoyed them so much. Here is a copy and pasted a link for you. One thing I would note is you should probably seperate them from the chicks as ducklings are super messy. You can keep the duck brooder drier by taking a lasagna pan and wrapping the top and sides with hardware cloth to put there food and water on as it helps the water from soaking the shavings or water you use (I prefer pine shavings myself the large flakes not the small) and then you can empty and rinse the pan. I can post a picture of my brooder I used for you. Also always make sure your ducks can have enough water to dunk their bills in and you will find as they grow (which is way faster then the chicks) that you may need to keep changing what you use for a waterer so that they can do so which they must to clear their nostrils. I used a milk jug that I cut a hole in at the height of their back and did that about two different times as they outgrew the one they had. I used a chick waterer first but they quickly outgrew that. Anyway here is the link I copied and pasted for you. If you look in the search there is a lot of helpful info too. [​IMG] https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/750869/raising-and-caring-for-ducklings

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2016
    1 person likes this.
  4. HennyPenny2

    HennyPenny2 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Lol you beat me too it Amiga! You must have posted that right about the same time, either that or I took forever typing it out because I didn't see your post or I wouldn't have posted. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2016
  5. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    @HennyPenny2

    I think we make a good team!
     
  6. kcmiddle

    kcmiddle New Egg

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    Sep 10, 2015
    Thank you i have some reading to do it looks like. I have water fowl feed and just built a larger brooder that I can keep them in. Do I have to keep them separated from the chicks cause eventually they will live along side my existing flock of 11 chickens?
     
  7. duketheduck331

    duketheduck331 Out Of The Brooder

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    May 1, 2016
    Bellingham Washington
    I am no duck expert but I think it's a good idea to keep them seperate from the chicks just in cause. we had a duckling with our chicks and since he was bigger than them he got one of the chicks and dislocated it's leg :/
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2016
  8. kcmiddle

    kcmiddle New Egg

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    Sep 10, 2015
    wow after reading all these I am wondering if ducks are worth the added effort compared to chickens. nevertheless I now have two that I will experiment with and time will tell. thank you for all the wonderful advice and I will diffidently have to address the water issue before I put them in the new brooder. And since I don't really have much of a choice but to keep them with the chicks I have a feed that is good for ducks but am wondering if the added protein will hurt the chicks? ill post a new picture once I get them situated in their new home. thank you so much.
     
  9. kcmiddle

    kcmiddle New Egg

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    Sep 10, 2015
    also if I add brewers yeast to the feed can the chicks eat it as well or do they need totally separate feed? both the ducklings and chicks are about 3-4 days old?
     
  10. HennyPenny2

    HennyPenny2 Chillin' With My Peeps


    I think they are definitely worth the added effort! You will love raising ducks more then the chicks. They are loads more fun, more interactive with you, they grow super fast which is so nice because they are out of the brooder in no time, chicks seem to take For-ever! Plus duck eggs are great! My friend who raises both gave me some since mine aren't laying yet and wow they are fantastic in baked goods! I think you will really enjoy them even if they take a little extra care, I love my chickens, always will, but I really really love my ducks....shhhhh don't tell my chickens. [​IMG]

    What feed are you using? You can use a starter grower for both, I used one that was 18% protein. A lot of chick feed can have as much as 20%. As far as keeping them together I think you will see that you will need a separate brooder for the ducks, like soon. I just used a clear rubber maid type container that was the cheapest I could find. I also built a duck play pen for them at 3 weeks to be in during the day as my temps here in the south are plenty warm enough. They love it. It's completely covered and I keep an area shaded for them. Made it out of PVC pipe.
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2016

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