New to ducks...several questions

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by loopy12, May 15, 2009.

  1. loopy12

    loopy12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2009
    My husband has always wanted ducks but I didn't want to be filling and emptying a kiddie pool every day or two so said no. Then we had about 2 acres of land cleared which had been covered in inpenetratable brush and thickets and we found there was a spring...which led to us digging a 25x30ft 'test' pond, 3.5ft deep. It overflows into a ditch so the water is contantly moving, at the rate of, say, a tap turned half off.
    So I said we could get ducks...

    Now I've thought about it more I'm wondering if the running water isn't so useful after all - won't the duck poop sink as sediment and be undisturbed by the water flowing into the ditch? Is 25x30 feet big enough (we will make it bigger one day, just not yet while we have a toddler - we need to be able to fence it in for safety)?
    We fenced in an area twice the size of the pond for the ducks - is that going to be big enough too?

    We currently have 6 Pekin ducklings in our back passage growing like weeds. I'm unsure how old they are - got them at the feed supply store. When we got them they still had their pipping tooth on their beaks and it was gone by the following morning - any ideas how old that would've made them? That was just over a week ago and they are two and a half times their initital size already. Just trying to work out when they'll be able to move outside.

    Finally, we had a heatlamp until yesterday. We woke up in the morning to find the house full of smoke - couldn't figure out where it was coming from until we spotted the lamp had fallen onto the wood shavings which were black and smoking, on the verge of catching light! Luckily the bulb blew before we ended up with smoked duck (or smoked human).
    They seem to be ok without it as there is 6 of them and they huddle together, but should I get another heat lamp anyway?

    Think I had some other questions, but will leave them for later!
    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. 1lpoock

    1lpoock Spruce Creek Waterfowl

    Apr 20, 2009
    Sandusky, Ohio
    You had a close call with that heat lamp....if you got your ducks a week ago and they had the tooth still on...they are just about 1 week old.
     
  3. headred

    headred Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 28, 2009
    Lawrence
    I put mine outside at 2 weeks, and that was in March. They should be fine. You can pretty much answer any question on this site. My ducks are in a pen at night (7 of them) that is roughly 4 ft. x 12 ft. and then I use a little tikes playhouse for shelter. I let them roam my yard during the day. Our city ordinance says you need 3 sq. feet per duck for shelter if that helps you any. Have fun!
     
  4. ScoobyRoo

    ScoobyRoo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 21, 2008
    Land of OZ
    you don't say what area you live in. As long as they have shelter and can get away from drafts, they will be fine.

    BTW [​IMG] from Kansas and [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2009
  5. greyhorsewoman

    greyhorsewoman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 3, 2008
    Endless Mts, NE PA
    The pond sounds fine, but I wouldn't put them out till they are fully feathered. They will be easy prey for too many things and aren't really ready to swim all day. (Ducklings absorb oil from mother duck that helps them.)
     
  6. froggie71

    froggie71 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 18, 2009
    Shamong, NJ
    [​IMG] and [​IMG] from NJ. We have 9 ducks and 4 guineas in a 10 x 10 coop which is open to the run. We only use a kiddie pool when they are outside and a very small water bowl inside run which they take turns swimming in so your swimming area is plenty big for now. Though ducks need water to keep their bill clean, and though they enjoy swimming a lot, they don't need water to swim in. Agreed, they need to be feathered out before letting them out all day. They don't have their mothers to protect them with oil to keep them dry. Good luck! Enjoy the ducks they are so fun to watch!
     
  7. loopy12

    loopy12 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 11, 2009
    Ah, yes, forgot - we are in upstate new york. The weather's anywhere between 55 and 90 degrees during the day at the moment. I have been taking them on daily 20 minute sojourns for a walk on the grass and a paddle in a kiddie pool (with full towel drying afterwards), but its quite warm today so I have put them in a huge dog cage with their food, water and a cardboard box for shade and will let them play out there for an hour or two if they're ok. Seem happy right now - catching the odd spider/ant and pecking the grass - not huddling or anything. One of our chickens is trilling at them - she's been broody lately so maybe she'll mother them a bit, though they're already more than half her size.

    I just believe they get so big so quick - literally they are noticabley bigger in the morning than they were at bedtime. Its shocking!

    There is a bit of pink skin showing on their shoulders and 'elbows' of their wings. Is it normal? Its like they are growing too quickly for their fluff!

    I was considering one of those big dogloos as a duck house. You can get doors for them and because they are plastic it would be easy to wash them down. Not sure now that it would be big enough.
     
  8. Wifezilla

    Wifezilla Positively Ducky

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    Oct 2, 2008
    Colorado
    There is a bit of pink skin showing on their shoulders and 'elbows' of their wings. Is it normal? Its like they are growing too quickly for their fluff!

    Sounds normal. Sometimes they seem to double in size over night.​
     

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