Old fashioned Broody thread for ducks 2013 edition

quirkybeeper

Chirping
Jul 24, 2011
104
4
81
Guilford County, NC
I cannot believe how fast this little critter is growing!!! Of course I'm also reminding myself of how big my first 2 ducks were, and they were only 3 weeks when I got them. She is quickly outgrowing her current "brooder," I have to go on the hunt this week for something bigger...maybe, just maybe, Walmart will still have kiddie pools lol

She's driving me nuts at the moment, she's freaking out over the pine shavings in her brooder...I have them covered with fabric, but I think I'm going to have to replace the shavings with newspaper...with fabric on top, of course, I don't want any leg injuries!!

As I mentioned, we got her a little stuffed bear thing at Petsmart that she has been sleeping with, and it shows her change in size most dramatically...

She hatched on the 10th.

Here is Indigo when we got it on the 12th...





And here is Indigo with the bear on the 15th...



Well, I'm off to pitch her in the scrap pile and clean out her cage (hehehe it's just a small bin with shavings for her to sit in long enough for me to get her tote cleaned!), maybe let her hang out in the tub for a bit. Did I mention she doesn't swim, she hops like a frog? Crazy duck...
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium member
Oct 3, 2009
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I cannot believe how fast this little critter is growing!!! Of course I'm also reminding myself of how big my first 2 ducks were, and they were only 3 weeks when I got them. She is quickly outgrowing her current "brooder," I have to go on the hunt this week for something bigger...maybe, just maybe, Walmart will still have kiddie pools lol

She's driving me nuts at the moment, she's freaking out over the pine shavings in her brooder...I have them covered with fabric, but I think I'm going to have to replace the shavings with newspaper...with fabric on top, of course, I don't want any leg injuries!!

As I mentioned, we got her a little stuffed bear thing at Petsmart that she has been sleeping with, and it shows her change in size most dramatically...

She hatched on the 10th.

Here is Indigo when we got it on the 12th...





And here is Indigo with the bear on the 15th...



Well, I'm off to pitch her in the scrap pile and clean out her cage (hehehe it's just a small bin with shavings for her to sit in long enough for me to get her tote cleaned!), maybe let her hang out in the tub for a bit. Did I mention she doesn't swim, she hops like a frog? Crazy duck...
WOW, big difference in size. did you ever get her a mirror? she really needs to know what she is. And it will be great company for her. I hope she is also bringing you pleasure along with the craizes.
When I had my lone ducking inside I used a towel and would put him under it like a mama covering him with her body he'd quieten right down. I love the pics thanks for sharing her with us.
 

quirkybeeper

Chirping
Jul 24, 2011
104
4
81
Guilford County, NC
WOW, big difference in size. did you ever get her a mirror? she really needs to know what she is. And it will be great company for her. I hope she is also bringing you pleasure along with the craizes.
When I had my lone ducking inside I used a towel and would put him under it like a mama covering him with her body he'd quieten right down. I love the pics thanks for sharing her with us.
A couple questions, and I can start a new thread if needed lol
I haven't really sat and watched, but it seems like she hasn't figured out how to use the water to clear out her nares yet...the water is deep enough, and the hole I cut in the jug is big enough for her to fit her head in. She does it in the tub though, so I've been letting her swim in the evenings mostly for that reason. Anyway, I'm a bit concerned about that. The other is that she doesn't really seem to walk around. When she walks it doesn't look like there's a problem, and it could just that she's running out of room (I gotta get a pool or sand box or something...mid-December...no problem). I've heard things both pro and against supplementing with niacin...I'm using Manna Pro Non-Medicated Starter...it says it's complete crumbles for chicks, ducklings, and goslings, and it specifically lists a niacin supplement in the ingredients. Basically I've heard don't supplement unless there are problems (obvious deficiencies), and I've also heard to supplement proactively. One of my first ducks had a leg injury and she wasn't able to take care of herself and died last winter, so I guess I'm a bit overly cautious when it comes to that.

Otherwise, this little rascal is doing well, but I'm definitely going to run out of duckling food before I ran out of duckling!! But I love having her around, I'm going to have a hard time when it comes time to put her outside with the big ducks
 

HollyDuckFarmer

Songster
Jun 30, 2012
2,683
164
208
LP Michigan
@quirkybeeper

I have very gently dipped duckling's beaks into water to "teach" them to clean their bills. Normally tho, broody moms do this all naturally, without me doing anything at all. Some feeds contain Niacin, some do not. I suggest that you read the label on your feed bag, find out if the Niacin is in there or not, and then make a decision based on that as well as what you are observing.
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium member
Oct 3, 2009
101,734
93,279
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Mountains of Western N.C.
A couple questions, and I can start a new thread if needed lol
I haven't really sat and watched, but it seems like she hasn't figured out how to use the water to clear out her nares yet...the water is deep enough, and the hole I cut in the jug is big enough for her to fit her head in. She does it in the tub though, so I've been letting her swim in the evenings mostly for that reason. Anyway, I'm a bit concerned about that. The other is that she doesn't really seem to walk around. When she walks it doesn't look like there's a problem, and it could just that she's running out of room (I gotta get a pool or sand box or something...mid-December...no problem). I've heard things both pro and against supplementing with niacin...I'm using Manna Pro Non-Medicated Starter...it says it's complete crumbles for chicks, ducklings, and goslings, and it specifically lists a niacin supplement in the ingredients. Basically I've heard don't supplement unless there are problems (obvious deficiencies), and I've also heard to supplement proactively. One of my first ducks had a leg injury and she wasn't able to take care of herself and died last winter, so I guess I'm a bit overly cautious when it comes to that.

Otherwise, this little rascal is doing well, but I'm definitely going to run out of duckling food before I ran out of duckling!! But I love having her around, I'm going to have a hard time when it comes time to put her outside with the big ducks
From all I've heard Mama pro is great feed and if it specifically says for ducklings and contains niacin then I wouldn't think you'd need to supplement just keep an eye on it which you are. Bigger brooder is in order for sure give her more space to run around and build up her legs. Once you give her more space do exercises
put her at opposite end of brooder so she has to walk/run to get to food or mirror or snuggly stuffed animals. she needs to run around to build up her leg muscles. swimming is good too glad your doing that. Have you offered her any chopped up lettuce in her waterer? this may get her motivated to wash her nares out when scooping out some lettuce. Be sure to offer her grit when feeding anything other than her mana pro. One reason I mentioned about a mirror is she needs to know she is a duck, seeing herself will help her identify with the ducks outside when the time comes. Right now she has no idea what she is since she can't see herself.
 

quirkybeeper

Chirping
Jul 24, 2011
104
4
81
Guilford County, NC
I finally got to the store (yay!) and picked up a couple things...I got a mirror from the automotive department, it's meant to be cut to fit a missing car mirror, so I know she can't break it. I also read in another thread that if you give them something to play with, it'll keep them occupied and the shavings won't be as tempting to play with. I got her a little bird toy that hangs down from the wire at the top of her cage. I think she may now be traumatized! The first thing she did was peck at it which made it fly across and bounce off the wall of her pen and come back toward her! She was also playing "peek-a-duck" with the mirror...once she figured out that the thing in the mirror pecked at her when she pecked at it, she went over in the corner where she couldn't see herself and would streeetch her neck out just far enough to see if that other thing was still there, then put her head back down next to her bear. Poor little ducky, but it sure was funny to watch! She has gotten over the initial shock now and seems comfortable with both of them there.

She also finally figured out how to stick her head all the way into the water container to clear out her nares, but occasionally she still sounds like she has a stuffy nose. Hopefully that'll clear up though.

And the best way to get crazy looks is to walk into Walmart in mid-December and ask for a kiddie pool...so I think we're going to build a new brooder/pen for her so she'll have more room.
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium member
Oct 3, 2009
101,734
93,279
1,792
Mountains of Western N.C.
I finally got to the store (yay!) and picked up a couple things...I got a mirror from the automotive department, it's meant to be cut to fit a missing car mirror, so I know she can't break it. I also read in another thread that if you give them something to play with, it'll keep them occupied and the shavings won't be as tempting to play with. I got her a little bird toy that hangs down from the wire at the top of her cage. I think she may now be traumatized! The first thing she did was peck at it which made it fly across and bounce off the wall of her pen and come back toward her! She was also playing "peek-a-duck" with the mirror...once she figured out that the thing in the mirror pecked at her when she pecked at it, she went over in the corner where she couldn't see herself and would streeetch her neck out just far enough to see if that other thing was still there, then put her head back down next to her bear. Poor little ducky, but it sure was funny to watch! She has gotten over the initial shock now and seems comfortable with both of them there.

She also finally figured out how to stick her head all the way into the water container to clear out her nares, but occasionally she still sounds like she has a stuffy nose. Hopefully that'll clear up though.

And the best way to get crazy looks is to walk into Walmart in mid-December and ask for a kiddie pool...so I think we're going to build a new brooder/pen for her so she'll have more room.
Thank you for making me laugh out loud this morning, I would have loved to have seen it all. Sounds like you have it all covered and as for the kiddy pool she'd be jumping out of it in no time anyway so best to scratch that for now except for swimming. LOL do you have a large dog crate that's what I used on my lone duckling, I took off the top half put the door back on and used the tie wraps to hold it in place, put down shaving and old towels over top then placed the water and feed bowl on top of an old serving tray I have, kept the bedding a little drier, put the heat lamp over one end and the stuffy and mirror and put the duckling inside man did this crate swallow it up but they grow so fast. I ended up towards his time in the house close to 3 months using an Xlarge dog crate. I actually put the crate in my closet with the door facing out and used the pole I hang my clothes on to hang the heat lamp from securing it with tie wraps to make sure it didn't fall off. Just some ideas, also I saw one time someone went to Lowes or a furniture store and got one of the big appliance boxes and used it as a brooder.
 

quirkybeeper

Chirping
Jul 24, 2011
104
4
81
Guilford County, NC
:lol:   Thank you for making me laugh out loud this morning, I would have loved to have seen it all. Sounds like you have it all covered and as for the kiddy pool she'd be jumping out of it in no time anyway so best to scratch that for now except for swimming. LOL do you have a large dog crate that's what I used on my lone duckling, I took off the top half put the door back on and used the tie wraps to hold it in place, put down shaving and old towels over top then placed the water and feed bowl on top of an old serving tray I have, kept the bedding a little drier, put the heat lamp over one end and the stuffy and mirror and put the duckling inside man did this crate swallow it up but they grow so fast. I ended up towards his time in the house close to 3 months using an Xlarge dog crate. I actually put the crate in my closet with the door facing out and used the pole I hang my clothes on to hang the heat lamp from securing it with tie wraps to make sure it didn't fall off. Just some ideas, also I saw one time someone went to Lowes or a furniture store and got one of the big appliance boxes and used it as a brooder.

Here's what I'm talking about...this is what we had with Alfie and Kylie, and it lasted them long enough until they were ready to go outside, which ended up being 12 weeks, give or take.



This is the pool with just the first layer of the wire built up.



Once all was said and done, the wire was about 20-24" high, and it wasn't low enough for them to get out. That's the least expensive option, or would be, if I could find a pool lol...so I'm just going based off experience. The only difference between then and now is that I have a brand new duckling, and I got Alfie and Kylie when they were 3 weeks old. A dog crate will be crazy expensive so I think we're just going to build a box out of wood and build up the sides with that wire, line it with a tarp, and use some hardware cloth over newspaper to keep it clean. I think I read about that on another thread, where we can just hose off the mesh and replace the newspaper, because trying to drag that pool out of the house full of shavings was a pain in the neck lol
 
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Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium member
Oct 3, 2009
101,734
93,279
1,792
Mountains of Western N.C.
Here's what I'm talking about...this is what we had with Alfie and Kylie, and it lasted them long enough until they were ready to go outside, which ended up being 12 weeks, give or take.



This is the pool with just the first layer of the wire built up.



Once all was said and done, the wire was about 20-24" high, and it wasn't low enough for them to get out. That's the least expensive option, or would be, if I could find a pool lol...so I'm just going based off experience. The only difference between then and now is that I have a brand new duckling, and I got Alfie and Kylie when they were 3 weeks old. A dog crate will be crazy expensive so I think we're just going to build a box out of wood and build up the sides with that wire, line it with a tarp, and use some hardware cloth over newspaper to keep it clean. I think I read about that on another thread, where we can just hose off the mesh and replace the newspaper, because trying to drag that pool out of the house full of shavings was a pain in the neck lol
That's a great idea for a brooder though. and I love the pic of your 2 ducklings when they were babies. so sweet. you are going to have her walking on hardware cloth I hope it is really rough on ducks feet.
 
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