Science fair expierament

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by thedouph, Feb 20, 2015.

  1. thedouph

    thedouph Out Of The Brooder

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    Ok, so me and a friend are entering in a science fair. We want to test something on ducks, but need ideas. The ducklings will be a day old when they arrive and we will have about a month to run the experiment.

    In this process the ducklings will not be harmed in any way.

    We had these ideas, though they didnt work out:

    1.) place half the ducks in view of some type of ball and see if they bond to it. The others will not have it.

    2.) instead of a ball, do different peope, girls and boys, and different races.

    (We need something along the lines of this, though other ideas would be very much appreciated.):p
     
  2. Amykins

    Amykins Overrun With Chickens

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    I'm generally not a fan of these types of experiments, because if your goal is to tinker with how they imprint, well, it's permanent. If you imprint a duckling on a ball, it will always think it's a ball and will become SEVERELY stressed if it isn't constantly near one, or a bunch of them. Although right away that's doubtful, since even at a day old a duckling has usually already imprinted.

    That said, I'm also curious to know what will happen to your ducks when you are done with them. Do you have a contingency? Who will care for them? Who will keep them when you're done?
     
  3. thedouph

    thedouph Out Of The Brooder

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    We are keeping 3 (of the 6). The others are going to already arranged homes, where i am confident they wil be takencare of :)

    On that note, you have a good point- that wouldnt be the best expeirament, so im looking for some other ideas...we were originally planning to test if this growth gel (its made for ducks) helps them mature sooner with the duckling without it...we wouldnt have enought time to test it though :(
     
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    It seems to me that my ducks are very suspicious of treats that they did not get when they were very young.

    So you might, say, have one group that gets shredded lettuce and kale as treats, and one group that gets a few peas as treats (at about a week of age, and after they have had just a little chick grit so they can chew). Then when they are a month old, see if they are interested in a different kind of treat than what they got when they were one or two weeks old.

    At one month, they may still be young enough to learn to eat more kinds of treats, but they may not. That is why we experiment.

    As long as the ducklings are treated properly (have you read Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks yet?) and well cared for, I don't see how this experiment would be problematic.

    You also might try this - give treats in two different colored but otherwise identical bowls for two or three weeks. Then switch bowls (so only the color changes) and see if they get as excited, or if the different color bowl does not look as interesting as the one they usually get their treats in.
     
  5. thedouph

    thedouph Out Of The Brooder

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    I love these ideas, i will deffinetly consider it! I have not read the guide yet but am looking into it right now :D thanks so much for your help, and will most likely do something very similar to this.
     
  6. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Please keep us updated - ducklings are waterfowl, they have certain needs - like more niacin than chicks, and slightly different temperatures, please post on the forum with any questions, even to just upload some photo's that we can enjoy.
     
  7. thedouph

    thedouph Out Of The Brooder

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    Trust me, i will :p
     
  8. Amykins

    Amykins Overrun With Chickens

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    I like the color idea, as ducks can see full spectrum color just like humans. The treat idea, not so much - ducks are piggies, oftentimes you give 'em one green veggie, they quickly learn ALL green veggies = nom. Guess what happened when I wore a green t-shirt around my Wobbles.
     
  9. thedouph

    thedouph Out Of The Brooder

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    Oh gosh, did they try to eat your shirt?
     
  10. Amykins

    Amykins Overrun With Chickens

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    What do you think? [​IMG]

    Hey, there's another idea - maybe try to train them. You could test the long-term memory or trainability of an animal often considered "dumb". Now we here at BYC know that's not the case, otherwise ducks wouldn't respond so well to a solid schedule and regimen (seriously, duck owning tip: Develop a routine. It'll make your lives so much easier.) If you deviate from the routine you can see the ducks get all agitated, like "hey wait a minute, that's not supposed to be what happens next!" :p
     
    Last edited: Feb 20, 2015

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