Pekin Free-Ranging Question

Iamgrateful

Chirping
8 Years
Aug 29, 2011
133
4
98
So our two Pekin ducklings are over a month old now and we are currently building them a nice secure pen out back behind our house near the pond. We had planned on letting them free-range the field and pond during the day and then lock them up at night. I have seen large den holes next to the pond and I'm thinking it is probably a muskrat or mink living there. I want to let the ducks enjoy the pond, but I'm really scared of something killing them. How safe would two Pekin's be out there during daylight hours? I don't want to let them loose just to be walking targets to predators. The pond is about 300 feet from our house. I don't know what to do with them so that they are happy and safe.
 

Blondiega1

Songster
9 Years
Nov 5, 2010
549
16
141
Dallas, Ga.
So our two Pekin ducklings are over a month old now and we are currently building them a nice secure pen out back behind our house near the pond. We had planned on letting them free-range the field and pond during the day and then lock them up at night. I have seen large den holes next to the pond and I'm thinking it is probably a muskrat or mink living there. I want to let the ducks enjoy the pond, but I'm really scared of something killing them. How safe would two Pekin's be out there during daylight hours? I don't want to let them loose just to be walking targets to predators. The pond is about 300 feet from our house. I don't know what to do with them so that they are happy and safe.
We have a 5 acre lake and mine free range during the day.
We have seen coyote and fox around in the past, so I make a point of letting my dogs outside to romp around so that the ducks learn to stay on the water!
I don't teach the dogs to chase the ducks, but I do let them outside so the ducks are TERRIFIED of the dogs.
I want them to be scared and to know that staying on the water is where they are the safest.
So far so good.
I know there is always the chance of something happening, but I want them to be able to enjoy the lake and all the goodies it has to offer during the day.
 

Iamgrateful

Chirping
8 Years
Aug 29, 2011
133
4
98
How many ducks do you have and how long have they been free-ranging on the lake? Our pond is only 50 x 150 feet so not very big at all. I will feel so guilty if I let them free-range and they get killed. :( They are Pekins and so they don't fly.
 

Oregon Blues

Crowing
8 Years
Apr 14, 2011
5,531
247
273
Central Oregon
There is no way to tell you how safe they will be without knowing what predators you have locally.

It's not just wildlife that eats ducks. Loose neighborhood dogs are also a big threat. Since most predators can swim, being on the water doesn't guarantee safety.

If you have mink living close to your house, you are going to have to build a really secure pen to keep the ducks safe. Although, I don't think mink live in large dens.
 

Amiga

Overrun with Runners
10 Years
Jan 3, 2010
23,213
2,769
531
Southern New England
How many ducks do you have and how long have they been free-ranging on the lake? Our pond is only 50 x 150 feet so not very big at all. I will feel so guilty if I let them free-range and they get killed. :( They are Pekins and so they don't fly.
I have just witnessed a horrible experience, my friend losing her runner flock. So that influences how I feel about this. And I feel that the wise caring part of you knows that you are putting those ducks at risk if you let them free range. Listen to your intuition. Give yourself a few days and come up with a better plan.
 

Iamgrateful

Chirping
8 Years
Aug 29, 2011
133
4
98
Thanks - I have decided not to let them free-range the pond. We are going to build them a pen up close to the house next to the chickens where they will have a little pool to swim in. Might not be as nice as letting them swim the whole pond, but at least they will be alive to enjoy life. :)
 

Iamgrateful

Chirping
8 Years
Aug 29, 2011
133
4
98
I have just witnessed a horrible experience, my friend losing her runner flock. So that influences how I feel about this. And I feel that the wise caring part of you knows that you are putting those ducks at risk if you let them free range. Listen to your intuition. Give yourself a few days and come up with a better plan.
I'm sorry to hear of your friend's Runner flock. :( :( Thanks for the advise....I'm gonna take it!
 

Blondiega1

Songster
9 Years
Nov 5, 2010
549
16
141
Dallas, Ga.
How many ducks do you have and how long have they been free-ranging on the lake? Our pond is only 50 x 150 feet so not very big at all. I will feel so guilty if I let them free-range and they get killed. :( They are Pekins and so they don't fly.
I have six.
One has been on the lake over 3 years and the other 5 just 3 weeks.
 

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