overwintering ducks on a pond

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by dkellyp, Oct 1, 2013.

  1. dkellyp

    dkellyp Hatching

    Oct 1, 2013
    I have 3 Cayuga ducks that are probably about 4 months old. they are currently living happily on my 1/2 acre pond which is in my sheep pasture. it is completely fenced but I still worry a little about predators. they have a dog igloo on the edge of the pond with some large rocks and tall grass for cover. I leave them out over night and so far so good. my question is, how will they do once the weather gets colder. we are in the Kankakee Illinois area a we will definitely get cold enough to freeze over. will the igloo be enough shelter? will they be able to get enough water? the pond is very deep (35 feet in the deepest part) so I know it won't freeze solid but how do ducks get water to drink in the wild during the winter.
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England

    I can tell you are very fond of your ducks. For me, I gotta say I would be worried about their welfare in the current setup.

    I think part of your mind is warning you, actually.

    In winter, predators can become much more determined. If they just have an igloo with no door, something can reach in there and they are gone. I have heard of that happening to others.

    You are also right about concern about drinking water and ice.

    Ponds attract predators. I would get them to a safer shelter.
  3. duckins

    duckins Songster

    Dec 29, 2012
    Gladys, Va
    I've heard of ducks staying in ponds if predators are around and the water starts to freeze around the duck. Honestly with your current setup the pond is their main shelter and its a matter of time before something happens. Sorry to sound so harsh but predators are very determined when duck for dinner.
  4. Usually, ducks prevent the surface from freezing over completely by constantly swimming in circles, but the lower the temperatures fall, the more difficult it gets for the ducks to keep the water open and now and then, ducks get frozen like Shackleton.
    Furthermore, when the ice layer is thick enough to carry a predator, one might try to get to the ducks on the pond, and depending on how cold it is, the hole in the ice might not be big enough to give protection.
    I would advice to build a door for you dog house and coop your ducks up there for the night.
  5. dkellyp

    dkellyp Hatching

    Oct 1, 2013
    thanks for the advice. I am working on a floating dock with a duck house for until we get a hard freeze. then I will probably move them into the barn till spring.

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