Question on feed

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by GordieH, Jul 16, 2011.

  1. GordieH

    GordieH Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 10, 2011
    West Texas
    I have some ducks that are now close to 2 months old and I want to switch them from the chick starter I have been feeding them. I have read that they do not need as high a protein food as the chickens do, so I don't want to put them on grower mash. I can get regular chicken feed or game bird feed, both non-medicated, locally at the feed store. Which would be better? Assuming that the game bird feed is not a lot more expensive. [​IMG]
     
  2. Eroc1_1

    Eroc1_1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 12, 2011
    The game bird might have a higher protein level than the Chicken feed - so check that. You may want to step them down to around a 16% protein level. But the game bird might have a higher niacin content which is what is needed for waterfowl. I guess you could always 'dilute' the game bird feed with some oats or wheat....
     
  3. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I knocked down protein with chopped rolled oats. If you're concerned about niacin, then brewer's yeast, worms, bugs, fish, etc. would supply more of that. (My understanding is that animal food has niacin in it).

    I used Blue Seal Grower/Cal for months with good success. The last few months I have slowly switched to a non-soy organic layer mash. I still toss in a little dry cat kibble and oyster shell.

    We also had a calcium deficiency problem for several weeks and I am adding calcium gluconate to their feed for now. I think I underestimated how many of their calories they were getting from low-calcium foraged foods. I'm still working on learning what works best for my runners.
     
  4. GordieH

    GordieH Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 10, 2011
    West Texas
    Thank you Eroc and Amiga for the replies. Will definitely check the protein levels. I now have my bigger ducks (6) running free in the yard. They have access to all sorts of bugs and some gecko tails if they spot them. Hoping the geckos are fast enough to escape. Especially the new generation.

    Was fun to watch my two day olds (chicks and 3 more Pekins) snapping up insects flying around the brooder light. I have them outside in an outbuilding in a wire and wood cage I made for our parakeets (Parakeets will have to wait a few more weeks). It just comes naturally for them. I know where the phrase, 'like a duck on a June bug' comes from. HEHE.

    I will have to take some more recent pics and post them in my FB album.
     

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