New to Pekin Ducks help needed.

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by ladyh, Mar 12, 2015.

  1. ladyh

    ladyh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 9, 2015
    Hi all,

    I have read about keeping the area temperature warm for the ducklings until they get their feathers. I have a plastic tub with cut out and 100watt bulb for them in the barn (4 of them). The temp during the day gets about 85-90. When I check in the morning the temp is about 40, as the outside temp is about high 30's. The ducklings do not have their feathers...I got them March 5 from Tractor Supply. They told me they are about 4-5 days old. That would make them about 2 weeks now. AT 40 degree temp, they are active, eating swimming and it doesn't seem to bother them. I'm wondering if I'm just not understanding the age/temp thing. Any advice would be helpful.

    At this point I'm feeding them crushed dog food, starter grower 20%, green bermuda cuttings, cut up lettuce free choice. They seem to be thriving, am I just being a worry wort on the temp? It makes me want to put them outside in their pen if they are okay at 40 degree temp but there is not light access out in a pen?

    Thanks
     
  2. paddock36

    paddock36 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If they don't have feathers and the temp is that cold I would not move them outside. Where you have them they can huddle under the light when it gets colder. They will move away as it warms up to them. Sounds like you are doing good so far.
     
  3. ladyh

    ladyh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you, they aren't even going under the light. That's what puzzles me. I could understand if they would move under the plastic tub under the light, but they aren't even doing that to stay warm. Yeah, they do huddle, but they don't make noise (I understand if they huddle and squack, they are cold?) They seem find running around at 40 degrees :-(

    Maybe because we have "dry" 40 degrees and not a "wet" climate would make the difference?
     
  4. paddock36

    paddock36 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I can only guess. I'm in FL so it's either wet , wet cold or wet hot, hot, hot.
     
  5. ladyh

    ladyh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes in FLA it is. I'm in the desert so it is mostly dry all the time. I just don't want to do something stupid. I guess I'm the type of person once I do something...I'll know. I'm thinking the feathers start coming in at 4 weeks?
     
  6. LadyIsadora

    LadyIsadora Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sounds like we have similar weather and I moved my ducks to the outside, fully enclosed pen last week. I go out to sit with them in the morning for an hour or so and have to wear a coat, but by noon I could wear a bikini in there. I just could not handle the mess in the house.
    BUT i do have a heat lame out there for them, two actually. They are rarely under the lamps, but its that sometimes I worry about. I guess they cant regulate their body heat well so it seems like they wait till they are getting chilly to remember to get under the lamp. They also have a lot of straw to insulate them. And after a trip to the pond they always preen under the lamps.
    I think ducks are very sneaky about hiding their comfort level. one second they seem fine then 20 minutes later you check on them before bed and boom you have a dead duck.
     
  7. PekinDiaries

    PekinDiaries Chillin' With My Peeps

    We kept our pekins inside until they were about 3 weeks old so that we could closely monitor/control the temp. As they got bigger, they were allowed more of the bathroom so that they could regulate themselves. We put them in the garage (in a large stock tank) and kept a heat lamp about 3 feet above them. on cold nights (40 degrees or under) we put plastic tote tops over the tank to trap the heat. It really all depended on where they sat in the tank. (I would go out there every half hour to check them because I'm just an over protective mom) They seemed to enjoy the temp and now, as they get older, they've needed the lamp less and less. They are a month old now, and last night was their first night that it was warm enough to keep the light off.

    I read that they start at 90-95 degrees and you lower it by 5 degrees every week. By 3-5 weeks, depending on your weather, they can be without the light completely. By the third week, they will only need it at night. They will let you know if they are cold/hot. Are you checking the temp directly under the lamp?
     
  8. ladyh

    ladyh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I got them March 5, and put them outside Friday. There is a 100watt bulb in the orange plastic. The nights are around 40 degrees but they don'' seem to care...Its windy and they don't care about that either LOL they don't even have their feathers yet. I bought 4 more Friday and they are a bit smaller but they seem fine. The bigger ones, seem to huddle around the littler ones... This morning they seemed perfectly fine. I read that if they are a little colder, their feather come in quicker, the warmer they are, it takes the feathers longer to come in. I don't know if that's true. They are soooo cute. I have a Nigerian Dwarf goat farm and the goats just wonder what the heck these things are LOL
     
  9. backyarfun

    backyarfun New Egg

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    What you could do if you haven't don this already is try to put a thermostat under the lamps where the ducks are and see what the temp is. That's what I had to do to make sure they and my chickens had just the right amount of heat. Hope this helps.
     
  10. ladyh

    ladyh Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes. it gets to about 65 degrees outside the lamp and about 70 under the lamp.. They seem to like it and are thriving very well. They are eating and drinking and very active. They are about 2 1/2 weeks and 4-5 days old mixed.
     

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