please, please help me out.

Hennyhandler

SilkieJax
10 Years
Jun 10, 2009
1,097
8
163
Cullman
I have looked and looked until I think I am going to scream.
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I can't figure this out so ANYONE please give me your advice, opinion, experience, anything!
Here it is. I am going to get 2 pekin ducks. I am planning on buying a dog house for a coop. More specifically, the interior is going to be 28.2" L X 20.3" W X 19.1" H.
The ducks will stay in whatever run I make them. So the question is what size run would you recommend? I have a good amount of space. I want a size that will be healthy for the ducks and will keep the mess down to a controlable minimum.

My water for them is a 50 gallon stock tank. I want to know should I bury this a little for them and put some rock around it or should I leave it raised and put a deck like frame around it? What, in your opinion is best for the ducks and the mess? I will also, have a hose that leads away from the run.

Sorry for all the questions thrown at you but I have searched and can't seem to come up with a setup for me. So PLEASE give me some opinions and PICS would be helpful too. Thanks.
 
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sianara

Songster
13 Years
Apr 27, 2007
1,607
33
206
Central MA
Ok now, calm down and stop screaming
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Your dog house is less than 5 sq feet so I would never lock them into it without access to a MUCH larger yard area. If it's a part of their run that they have access to 24 hours a day then it's fine.

The standard MINIMUM run space requirement is 10 sq feet but I can tell you from personal experience it is NOT enough space to maintain happy, healthy ducks (unless you are out there shoveling poop and replacing with fresh sand weekly - which I'm NOT).

I have three 7 year old hybrids (approx 6 lbs each) and their run is 10' x 17' (7' tall at peak) which is a total of 170 sq feet or 56.66 sq feet per bird. For me personally, this is the minimum space I would EVER have for a duck that size and I think Pekins are even bigger (maybe double?). This run is where they are housed for the entire winter. Periodically, throughout winter I sprinkle a few cups of DE down on the sand. It helps to dry out the sand and maintain a healthier environment. For all of their seven years that's where they've been housed and I haven't had a problem.

In the spring, I remove all the poop sand and replace it with 3-4" of fresh sand mixed with DE. During the non winter months they have a fenced yard beyond the run that is approx 15' x 25' (375 sq feet or 125 sq feet per duck). This again is the minimum I personally would ever have. I have another addtional yard in the woods that both the big chickens and the big ducks (two separate flocks) use one at a time every other week or so which is another 500+ sq feet. It's funny to look out and see the big chickens at the "gate" and they can't get into the big wooded yard and you can tell by the look on their faces that they're thinking "what the heck is going on here?" When it's the ducks' turn - man are they vocal and happy
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sianara

Songster
13 Years
Apr 27, 2007
1,607
33
206
Central MA
RE: The water tank...

I'm still trying to figure out the best set up for my girls. This is what I currently do: they have a 15 gallon rubber tub with a little ramp for access and a rock inside so they have something to step on to get out. It's about 10" inches deep. I fill it up with clean water 5-7 times a week. The ground area all around it gets messy so I just move it to a different spot weekly. That section of their yard is in sun all day long.

If you're going to use a 50 gallon tank make sure there's something inside that they can grasp onto to get out or they will be stuck and possibly get injured trying to get out. Pekins' are pretty big so they definitely need help whereas bantam ducks can just fly out (mine do).

Whether you bury it partially or not is totally up to you. If you do bury it, I'd recommend putting some very small stones (soft edges) or some flat paving type stones about 18" - 24" around the edge so they don't drill all the dirt up which will make a very messy, ugly, wet looking area. If you build a small deck just make sure it's in the sun so it can dry out or the deck wood will become slippery/slimey.
 
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Hennyhandler

SilkieJax
10 Years
Jun 10, 2009
1,097
8
163
Cullman
Ohh, thank you sooo much. I think ya'll have just saved some of my sanity.
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I am more than likely going to make a partial deck for them this way they can sit on it and it will hopefully stop some of the mess around the tank. I am going to go 12 by 14 which I think would be adequate space for two ducks. Yes, I think the rock is a good idea. I am also going to do this. I didn't think about the deck being in the sun to not get gross so thank you.
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Wouldn't want to make that mistake. Anyway, this has made me feel so much better and has cleared some of the waters so THANK YOU!!
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Terri O

Crowing
10 Years
Jan 2, 2010
4,671
45
296
WI~chickening for 30 years!
There was another person that posted how he did his duck pen. They were off the ground but he had a great idea with the drain in the tub and the pipes to drain it. See if you can find that one...he had pics. It looked like a good idea. TErri O
 

WadeMD

Songster
10 Years
Dec 16, 2009
154
1
109
near Frederick, MD
Most stock tanks have a flat surface on them. Get a bulkhead (they are holes with gaskets made to penetrate flat surfaces) and put a ball or gate valve on it. That way, you can drain your tank easily (even if you submerge it partially) and refill it. You will need to do that very often... the whole thing is only $10 or so and it'll make your life far easier. I would also put a deck around it of some sort, that prevents alot of grime from entering into it.

I am currently building a run/pen for 10 ducks thats going to be 14'x24' including a 9x9' pond and a 4x8' shelter/coop. I am working on pictures as I go and will post them in the not too far future.
 

gryeyes

Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers
10 Years
Sep 22, 2009
15,506
423
358
My slice of heaven in Somerset, CA
This weekend I scored at Lowe's by getting a very helpful manager to personally assist me with all the bits and pieces I need to build a drain pipe for my soon-to-be created small duck "pond." (I have two backyard ponds with plants and goldfish and mosquito fish, but I don't think I'm going to let them into those except for special, short visits.)

I have a rubber water trough, about 30 gallons, into which I'm going to cut a hole in the bottom to install a SHOWER drain (which has the gaskets and drain screen as part of the kit). To that, I'll attach a short, cut piece of 2 inch diameter ABS pipe, then a reducing bushing of PVC pipe and elbow down to half inch PVC pipe, with a ball-cock valve. (That manager personally found all the correct fittings, cut the 2" ABS pipe to size for no extra cost, and assembled the bits except for the connection to the long, PVC pipe!)

I'm going to build a retaining wall sort of above-ground surround for the trough, with the drain pipe leading out between a gap in the concrete brick things (those stackable, mortar-less retaining wall bricks) towards my garden.

I'm pretty excited about creating this for my two Cayuga ducklings, who are currently brooding IN that water trough in my bathroom. I know I'll have to put some steps of some sort in it so they can get out safely or rest when they are tired, once this is built.

But I did get the idea from another poster here on BYC, who has a GREAT setup with attached pen and duck house.
 

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