One slow picky eater and a few food questions


In the Brooder
7 Years
Apr 11, 2012
Does anybody else have a slow eating duck? It isn't that he doesn't eat, I just don't think he's getting enough of the produce I give them. He likes to take his time, check it out, maybe stick it in his mouth (I guess to test the taste) then spit it back out. Meanwhile Pip is inhaling everything in sight as fast as she can. Squeak is also a very picky eater while Pip has yet to see any produce that she dislikes. The only thing I find funny in any of this is what happens when I feed them grapes or peas. Squeak will take his and start running because if I'm not fast enough distracting Pip with hers, she goes after him trying to get whatever it is he's got in his mouth. It just looks so funny. I've tried putting food in both hands so they can each have their share only Pip will push Squeak out of the way to get what's supposed to be his then go back and eat what's hers.

I'm also wondering about quantity's of produce. Like with my rabbit certain things should only be given in limited quantities, generally sweets and things that can cause gas. And of the foods with no limits, she's fed at least 4 different things per meal to try for a reasonably balanced diet. Yet with my reptiles I was encouraged to allow unlimited protein up until around the 8th month. Greens were always offered then became the majority of their diet as adults.

I take Squeak and Pip chopped up greens several times a day. Usually only one thing at a time so they can't pick out one thing and ignore another. Peas and grapes are limited to hand feeding but is it possible for them to have too many of either in a day? Chopped up green beans are a huge hit. So is kale, green leaf lettuce, endive and escarole. Today they got cabbage for the first time and they were unsure at first but did end up eating it all. Is there a limit to how much produce they should have in a day? They'll be 2 months old this week.

In the evening they want out into the yard to wander around eating as long I'm close by. I started getting them to follow me to a tree where there are ants everywhere for them to eat. But their favorite thing is for me to leave them piles of whatever I'm cleaning out of a garden so they can pick thru it. LOL I can't throw it away until I have them in for the night. Tonight I saw them doing such an adorable thing yet it was sad at the same time. Wind picked up and the two of them were running with it at their back and flapping their wings trying to fly. It's like the instinct for flight is still hard-wired in their brains.


Overrun with Runners
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Jan 3, 2010
Southern New England
Elfie was a slow eater. Others would get to treats and she would still be standing there deciding what to do about it.

She has finally caught up pretty well. So I guess that some ducks are a little slow to develop. I would sneak her treats if I could.

The duck treat sticky may answer some of your questions.

Generally, while fresh greens are great, I think that you might be able to unbalance their diet if they eat so many greens that they are too full to eat things with protein and other components in them. At the same time, vegetables don't have as many calories, ounce per ounce, and so if their balanced ration is available at all times, and not just immediately after they eat their salad, they will likely be okay.

As always, watch closely to try to detect early signs of nutritional deficiency.

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