Question on Mandarin , Woods , and Black East Indies Ducks


11 Years
Aug 31, 2008
Berkley , Ma.
Hi all ,I've been build my duck Aviary posted here ;

I plan on getting some of the above breeds of ducks for my aviary ,
one of my question is this when the duck are not laying / sitting on eggs in the nesting boxies do they all sleep in a small coop on the ground and not use the nesting boxies .

the other question is how high do you place the nesting boxes off the ground (3 feet)

and can you tell me about how high or large are these ducks ( 6-8 " in heigth ) if so I will not have to build a large coop or shelter for sleeping and getting out of bad weather I don't want to build a coop or shelter to high and looks like a big ugly box sitting in the corner of the aviary.

Thanks Alan
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I'm sure someone will be able to answer your questions for you.
The Wood ducks and Mandarins will pick the box they feel most secure in and most of the time it will be the highest one. Of course if your birds are pinioned you will need a ramp up to the opening. They will only use it during breeding season, rest of the year they will perch on it. You will want an ample number or boxes for them to choose from, you don't want them using the same box.

The BEI's will make a nest on the ground or in some type of housing/shelter you have for them, or you may find them just dropping them where-ever for you to incubate. If you have them all together, you may find the BEI drake crossing with the others. The Mandarin/Wood ducks will not cross successfully. Your best bet would be to have your BEI's in a separate pen.

As for shelter for the Mandarins/Wood ducks, a three sided (couple of bails of straw with plywood on top) shelter or just an overhang will do. Many times they won't use housing.

I am at this step too. I thought maybe the BEI'S might try to breed with the mandarins and wood ducks, but nothing would happen....guess i will have to put them in a different pen.
Thanks giffy

so I guess if I lets say had 4 breeding pairs then a good number of nesting boxies would be 6 or 7 boxies .
And I guess looking at you web with ur nesting box height would be about 4 feet high to the entrance hole , do they use and like the log type nesting boxies that you have on the ground .

Thanks Again ,
My aviary was close to 900 square feet, I normally kept three pair in it. It is always best to start with one or two pair max in the beginning. This will make it easier to see what all is going to be involved for you to manage the birds and the upkeep of the pen. There is always a tenancy to start with too many birds and before you know it you are overwhelmed and it begins to take away from a great hobby. Depending on the area you live in, winter can be a challenge.

I tried all kinds of nesting areas and boxes. It has been my experience that the highest placed box is normally the one chosen, facing your water source is another favorite. Most of all they want to feel safe and secure. Neither the Mandarin or Wood ducks have ever used the hollowed out logs that I put in my aviary only the nest boxes.


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