Question about correct temperature for ducklings PLEASE

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by kitkatbahr, Jun 20, 2009.

  1. kitkatbahr

    kitkatbahr Songster

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    Apr 25, 2009
    Merritt Island, FL
    Hi,

    I have three Muscovy ducklings that are almost 3 weeks old. I just moved them from a large fish tank, to a wire dog kennel with hardware cloth over it, so they can't try and squeeze through the openings. In the fish tank, I had a heating pad set on low, to heat the tank for them. My question is, now that they are almost 3 weeks old, can they do without the heating pad? I live on the East coast of Florida and my house temperature is running 83 to 84 degrees We have the A/C set pretty high to help cut power costs. It has been over 95 degrees outside all week, with the temp feeling like 105 according to the news station!!!

    I have towels and a sheet over half of the dog crate, to keep out drafts. Do I need to keep them warmer than the temp in the house still or are they okay at this temperature? They have a chick waterer so they cannot "bathe" in it and get all wet. I do take them out and let them play in a larger water dish a couple of times a day, and dry them off good so they won't get chilled.

    Please let me know if this temp is sufficient or if I should try and figure a way to heat the dog crate.

    Thank you!


    Edited to add: I have the crate lined with lots of soft papertowels. There is also a shallow box for a bed for them, lined with papertowels, and also their two little stuffed beanie babies they have been sleeping with.
    Kathy
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2009
  2. Ewe Mama2

    Ewe Mama2 Songster

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    Mar 26, 2009
    Northeastern Ohio
    If your ducklings are almost three weeks old, their temp should be down to 80 degrees (90 the first week, 85 the second week, 80 the third week etc.) The temp can continue being lowered 5 degrees per week until they are fully feathered and no longer need any supplemental heat.

    I think if the drafty air is cooler than 80 degrees, then you might need to protect them from the drafts, but based on the A/C temps and your weather, you shouldn't have to worry.

    Definitely turn down the heat for the ducklings! It sounds like you and the ducklings could use some cooler weather! I wish I could send some NE Ohio breezes to you!

    Have fun with your babies (it sounds as though you are!)
     
  3. ScoobyRoo

    ScoobyRoo Songster

    Aug 21, 2008
    Land of OZ
    If you are in Florida can't they go out now? It is 80's and 90's here and I plan on putting my chicks out (when they are are at least 3 weeks old) with a heat lamp at nights. JMO
     
  4. kitkatbahr

    kitkatbahr Songster

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    Apr 25, 2009
    Merritt Island, FL
    Thank you for your replies!

    As far as putting them out right now, they are still so little and I can't put them in with my grown ducks, as I am afraid the grown ducks will hurt them. My husband is going to build me a temporary pen for them until they are big enough to go with the big ducks. Something that is raccoon and hawk proof! We have both here. I saw a raccoon walk through the yard in the late afternoon. He didn't even wait until dark! He was good sized, too! He took off pretty quick when I went outside. We have a trap set to try and catch him.

    For now, the HUGE wire dog crate will be a good home for them for a short time. I do take them outside every day to "play" in a supervised area and let them swim in a large plastic shoe box tote thing. I dry them off good after though, as I don't want them to get chilled. I also have a smaller dish that is deep enough that they can get their heads dunked to wash off their faces/nose area, a couple of times a day. I put that in a large plastic tote with papertowels on the bottom so they won't slip around. They play in that a few times a day. They can get in that dish too, but they can't swim. Once again, I make sure they are dry and not chilled, when they are done.

    Hopefully, they will be okay. They seem to be very happy, healthy and active. They eat really good and poop alot! LOL They are so cute.

    THanks again for the advice.

    Kathy
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2009
  5. cawooduck

    cawooduck Songster

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    Mar 21, 2009
    Livermore, CA
    I wouldnt hesitate to put them outside right now, they will handle the temps without a problem. I turned my wood duck and ring teal ducklings outside in the big pen at 3 weeks old and they are doing just fine, and the temps are dropping to about 50 degrees at night.

    You have to sit back and think about something, at 3 weeks old most of the brood is growing quickly and they are not all going to fit under the hen anymore. Your ducklings will adapt no problem, especially with those temps!!

    Goodluck to ya!!............Jason
     
  6. ScoobyRoo

    ScoobyRoo Songster

    Aug 21, 2008
    Land of OZ
    kitkat, why don't you just fashion a pen with some chicken wire and rebar (what I used) and put them out if you are able to be out with them. That way they are our for a bit til your DH gets the permanent pen built. They are a hoot to watch. We bought a small kiddie pool for them to use.
     

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