Panting ducklings--heat or stress?


5 Years
Jul 31, 2014

I had the ducklings outside on the grass for the first time today--it's a hot day but we were in the shade and they had just had a bath so they were wet. However, after we had been outside for a half hour or so and were dry, they started to pant. Around the same time, they heard some bird noises that seemed to make them nervous.

I put them into the outside coop, intending to have them stay there. However, they are still panting, but I can't tell if it's from the stress of a new place, or the heat. The temp is a double-edged sword, I think--it's warm enough to have them outside at night, but I am wondering whether it's too hot now during the day.

I think right now I will go get them and bring them outside, and put them back out when it is cooler this evening. Is it ok for them to pant, though, as long as they have shade and lots of water? I haven't had this issue before. The forecast is a high of 96 degrees, low of 72. The next few days are supposed to be a little warmer even.


And then one got smart lol...

By the way, there is a little shade on this side (you can see the water bowl is shaded) and the opposite end of the coop has a padded floor and enclosed sides and roof for shelter and shade.
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Do they have a pool they can get into to cool themselves down? You might also throw a tarp over the top to give them a lot more shade.
Yep, I'd bet heat too....Floki first did it when we were driving, and we don't have AC in our truck and summer heat in Chicago can be brutal....when she started panting, we both kind of freaked out, but we gave her some water and she'd stop.

And I'm sure they pant when stressed out, but I don't see any stressful situations in those pics.

So we learned as we went, we found ways to keep her cool......after learning that ducks don't sweat, and all their heat is produced and released in their legs, we had to adjust somethings.
Heat related panting that can lead to... wait for it... your babies being stressed. Huh huh what... no one... come on that was genius.

Try to find a shady place to move that coop or cover the top better or find a location that has strong wind currents. My place is a dust bowl for wind.Panting from heat will cause stress and agitation. When they start twitching their wings you know its bad.

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