Question about broody and ducklings

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by JulieNKC, Oct 1, 2011.

  1. JulieNKC

    JulieNKC Overrun With Chickens

    Sep 25, 2010
    Kansas City
    Ok, I think my duck eggs are fertile, so I set 2 of them under my broody silkie/oegb hen. My question is about after/if they hatch. I know brooder ducklings aren't supposed to get wet because they don't have the oil from momma. So what do I do if my hen hatches them? Should I seperate them somewhere where I can control how much water they can get in? Will they stick with momma hen and stay out of the kiddie pools and water dishes?
  2. heatherindeskies

    heatherindeskies Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 23, 2010
    SE Minnesota
    I would keep them separate with mom and control the amount of water they get into. remember they will try to get into water and you don't want a frantic hen mom following them into kiddie pool and drowning... unless you have a ramp in there at all times. They should be older before allowed to swim much anyway until they can produce their own oil and stay dry.
    Maybe someone knows that age?
  3. Speceider

    Speceider Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 4, 2011
    There's really nothing to worry about. Any container the ducklings can get into would have to be shallow or sloped so they can get out and the hen won't drown herself following them. Ducks and ducklings don't float because of the feather oils, rather feather/down structure. The sooner they swim, the better they do.

  4. DuckyMom

    DuckyMom Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 7, 2010
    Upstate NY
    I have to agree with heatherinthedeskies.
    The issue isn't floating. It's becoming waterlogged. A waterlogged duckling can risk sinking and can easily get cold and freeze to death.
    Being raised with out a female duck deprives them of her oils. No big deal, They just can't swim until they begin to get their juvinile feathers. (At 4 weeks I usually let mine swim in a clean paint tray for limited ammounts of time while supervised. This is fine but they have to be able to get warm and dry.)

    Follow the three rules of duckling care and your fine:
    And Dry
  5. JulieNKC

    JulieNKC Overrun With Chickens

    Sep 25, 2010
    Kansas City
    Thanks everyone. If they actually hatch (i thought I saw a bullseye, but am not 100% sure they are fertile) I have a tractor I will move into the run. My run is about 25' by 60', so plenty of room. That way they'll be able to see the other chickens and ducks, but not get into the waterers and get chilled. Or could I just put the chicken's waterers up high, and put down chick waterers for the ducklings? I don't have ramps going up to the kiddie pools, my ducks wouldn't use them so hopefully the ducklings won't be able to get in there until they are older.

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