Runners much more intelligent than I gave them credit for!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by ejctm, Aug 26, 2010.

  1. ejctm

    ejctm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    VILLAGE IN THE SHIRES
    My 8 week old runner ducklings were housed in a small hutch with their chicken mum until they outgrew it, so last week I decided to move them into the main chicken coop to spend the night. Also, their mum now needs a bit of relief from them as they are almost full grown. Well I herded them in the first night, expecting to have to do this every night afterwards, but to my surprise on the second night, and every night since, they have just run up the ramp themselves and put themselves to bed, just like the chickens do!

    Wow, I am so impressed and happy with them. They are just no trouble at all to keep (apart from the mud mess, lol!).

    Now they sleep very happily on the thick floor bedding of the coop underneath the shelf where the hens lay in nest boxes, and the chickens have the perches above them. This way the ducks have the ground floor and the chickens have the first floor accommodation!

    They are all very happy living together and free range all day around my garden, making huge holes in my lawn and generally giving me loads of entertainment.

    I just love keeping birds!
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    So glad to read that you and your runners are getting along so nicely! Mine are great, too. They would be happy to stay in the day yard all night, but it is not night-ready yet, so they do cooperate when I ask them to go into the more secure area. They also run around the gardens during the day some while I watch them. There are daytime predators, too, so I don't leave them unattended in the temporary fence around the gardens.
     
  3. ejctm

    ejctm Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 25, 2009
    VILLAGE IN THE SHIRES
    I guess we are really lucky, as although we live in a rural area, our house is surrounded by others in the village, so we have 6 feet high fencing all round. We don't see foxes here very often, and certainly not during the day anyway. In contrast, when I lived in the city, we saw 5 or 6 foxes every evening running around the streets.

    The only other predators would be neighbour's dogs, but none can get into our garden. I don't know if badgers would kill ducks but they cannot get in either. We had to watch the ducklings when they were smaller, as they were at risk from kestrels, crows and owls but they are too big now.

    When we had mallards last year, I had to herd all 12 of them into the coop every night, but these runners got the hint from the very start! And there was me thinking they had walnuts for brains!
     

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