Perfect Homemade Duck Feed

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Shellscom, Aug 18, 2014.

  1. Shellscom

    Shellscom Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 18, 2014
    Once again, I'm new to this website, so forgive me for my mistakes.

    I know that ducks mostly forage for food, but what should I add to their diet? I'm planning on raising them for eggs, so I would like them to have the most nutritious/healthiest eggs possible. I read up that feed mostly affects egg quality. Also, I know that seeds are good in small quantities, but what if I grind them up, so they're easier to digest? I would prefer a complex, yet organic feed for my ducks, similar to how Garden Betty made her whole grain chicken feed, with the appropriate protein ratio for them, even though egg-laying ducks probably have a different protein ratio for feed. Essentially, I'm an looking for a varied, feed that is nothing else but the best for my ducks, so I can get healthier ducks, and much healthier eggs! Include anything beneficial, such as small, but nutritious treats.

    As a side note, we tend to have very cold winters, but I read up that the ducks could tolerate it. We do get a significant amount of snow, so how should I change the feed to help them over the winter? Or should I just shovel some snow from them to free range on exposed earth?
     
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  2. Richb353

    Richb353 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Purina Layena Sun Fresh Recipe Crumbles/Pellets, 16% Protein and high calcium.

    I've been using the Purina Layena since day one for my flock for no other reason than it was on sale at TSC the week my first batch of ducklings arrived. Check the Purina website for all the nutritional details.

    Otherwise, my flock is free range and forages most of the day. Right now there are three ducks laying me an egg a day each. I can tell you they are delicious. (The Welsh Harlequin lay small eggs, but they are small ducks!)

    I've thrown out leftover shredded lettuce and once bought a bag of whole corn kernels. It sits for a little bit, but eventually they eat it all. They recognize the pellets and eat it out of my hand. I'm told peas are something of candy for ducks, but have yet to try it.

    I'm out of Florida, so can't help you with cold weather advice.

    Enjoy,
    Rich
     
  3. Amykins

    Amykins Overrun With Chickens

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    I actually recommend Mayuri over Purina in every way possible. I also use an organic feed called Payback, it's really good. But since it's hard to find, Mayuri is the way to go!
     
  4. Shellscom

    Shellscom Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 18, 2014
    I want to avoid using commercial feed, but if it's needed for supplement, I'll use some. I want to give them fresh veggies and greens, grain and seeds, and some protein sources such as small fish or meal worms over the winter. Let me know if I cannot use some of those. Also can I feed crushed seeds?
     
  5. Shellscom

    Shellscom Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 18, 2014
    Do any of you have any more tips? It's well appreciated.
     
  6. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    I have not tried it yet, but Joybilee Farm has a recipe for homemade non-gmo feed she uses for her livestock. Mother Earth News has published at least a couple of articles on feeding the flock directly from food grown on the homestead.

    Setting up worm bins or soldier fly larvae bins has also been suggested.

    I am also planning to try raising rosy red minnows as a supplemental food for the ducks.
     
  7. Shellscom

    Shellscom Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 18, 2014
    Would I have to supplement feed for a duck that is known for mostly foraging? And can I feed ducks crushed seeds?
     
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2014
  8. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Southern New England
    Short answer is yes, you need to supplement a foraging duck's diet.

    If you are in a temperate climate, food is not available all year. Even if you are in a much milder climate, food would need to be available steadily, in good proportions - protein, vitamins, minerals, enzymes...

    Some feed their ducks black oil sunflower seed.
     
  9. Shellscom

    Shellscom Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 18, 2014
    What would be a good mix of options for my ducks? I would prefer a homemade feed. I just want to be able to buy ingredients organically, mix them and feed to my ducks, such as grains, seeds, etc. Or as you suggested, BOSS.
     
  10. Brendalyn

    Brendalyn New Egg

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    I'm in North Central texas. The weather here fluxuates so often. We can have snow one day then 60 degrees and sunny the next. We have 3 ducks and 2 geese that free range on about half an acre. I make my own supplimental food for them and they are shiney, great weight, healthy and happy and they do lay (not now because of the temps). I mix oats, barley, sunflower seeds, lentils, corn, flaxseeds, chia seeds, dried egg shells ground down, and from time to time I add food grade DE and kelp. I also cut up our fruit and veggy scraps into small piece (no avocados as I read it is bad for them so I don't want to take the chance). All is good for them. The lady I got them from was just giving them chicken scratch. From the time I got them till now I noticed a huge difference in their health and appearance.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2016
    2 people like this.

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