newbie duck parents and have some questions about housing

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by lcammack, Mar 4, 2012.

  1. lcammack

    lcammack Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 15, 2011
    Hi all, we started out with six chicks last spring and now have six full grown beautiful chickens (so we must have done something right!). We decided this year after much research that we would like to try our hand at ducks. We have six ducks coming on April 4th (one Welsh Harlequin, one white layer, and 4 golden 300's). We thought we would like to have some duck eggs which is why we chose the golden 300's and the white layer (my youngest wanted a white duck!). So we have their area all picked out it is our old dog kennel that hasn't been used in a few years. It is very close to our already fenced in large run (about 35' x 65'). So my two questions are: the area of the kennel we want to enclose for their house is on concrete, I understand that ducks should not be kept on concrete, but I am wondering if we add some rubber mats for cushion and deep bedding if that would be acceptable. Second is if their house is in their night time enclosure do they have to be locked in the house or just in the run with their house? (it will be fully enclosed with hardware cloth. Oh and I just thought of one more question, how/ where do we set up their food and water, inside their house or just in their run? Sorry for the long post, I just want to make sure we give them the best home possible.
    Thanks
     
  2. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Sounds like a real nice place you have for your new ducklings, of course you know just like chicks they will need heat till completely featherd out. using rubber matts would be agood choice because you can just hose it off everyday. and as long as your pen is secure with hardware cloth top to bottom then I wouldn't think you'd have to lock them up at night. Just remember mink, weasel and a host of other predators will try just about anything to make your ducklings dinner so you'll have to be double sure your area is secure. putting hardware cloth into the ground will keep anything from digging under. place their food and water outside of their house to keep bedding dry. All the best with new ducklings and please post pics when you get them and let us know how they are doing.
     
  3. lcammack

    lcammack Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 15, 2011
    Thank you. Luckily we don't have any mink or weasels. But we do have the usual coyote, raccoon, possum, cats, etc. We are familiar with predator proofing. Our chickens live in fort Knox and luckily we have had no attempts by the predators so far to enter the coop/run. We made it so tight we have also found no signs of rodents in the run/coop. We used hardware cloth and also a hardware cloth apron to deter diggers. Our girls are able to free range during the day when we can supervise, because the neighbors have dogs and the chickens don't understand that the dogs across the fence are not like the dog they live and play with. I am pretty sure the dogs next door would enjoy some fresh chicken dinner. We will be following the same protocol with the ducks. They will brood in our shop, I have a brooder set up that is 4' x 8' x 2'tall that I will start out with about 4' x 4' and enlarge as they grow. I imagine that they will be in the brooder for up to 2 months, our weather here (pacific northwest) is very unpredictable in the spring and can be quite cold. So we will bring them out when we can, but until they are completely feathered and off heat they will be safe in the shop. I am glad to hear that we can leave the food and water outside of their nigh time coop, that will definitely help keep things neater.
     

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