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They are still scared :(

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by TTownChics, Mar 7, 2016.

  1. TTownChics

    TTownChics Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We have had our ducks for 2 weeks. We handle them and talk to them but they are super scared. They run when we refill their water but if we walk in the garage where they are, they huddle in a corner. Will it just take time? After standing there a minute, they start looking at us. I don't want them to be scared. I want them to be happy.

    We have them in a big pen in the garage until they can go outside.

    And is that one with the tuff going to be crested?

    [​IMG]


    Exploring outside

    [​IMG]
     
  2. pattyhen

    pattyhen Chicks Ducks oh my

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    The more time you spend with them they should settle down. Try and feed them treats getting them to eat out of your hand. Put a blanket down on the floor and sit and offer them treats talk to them. Good luck I hope they tame down for you.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. TTownChics

    TTownChics Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks I will do that! They are very sweet and seem to settle and then act curious so maybe they just need time.
     
  4. cayugaducklady

    cayugaducklady Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Getting down on their level helps. I used to squat walk around my ducklings for every possible chore. They seemed less scared that way.
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. lomine

    lomine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I completely agree with the above suggestions about getting on their level. It is their natural instinct to be scared of things above them, like people standing above them and hands reaching down towards them.

    I would also suggest letting them hear you before they see you. Whenever I went into the room I had my ducks brooding in I would first say hello or good morning. That would let them know I was there before I opened the door and they wouldn't be surprised by my entrance. After a while I would get happy chirps in response and they would be waiting.

    Another thing I did was use bath time as a time to bond. While they were swimming around I would have my hand at water level or just below. When they were tiny and in the sink I stood up but when they graduated to the tub I would sit on the floor next to them. I moved my hand as little as possible and always slowly. Sometimes I had fairy moss, it's a floating water plant, and would give them handfuls. They really loved it and the only time they got it was at bath time. They eventually got used to my hand. They would eat from it and when all the treats were gone they would start climbing up on my hand and arm. One of them would climb on and then jump off into the water. Sometimes they would sit for a bit to rest. I talked to them softly the entire time. It really helped them learn to trust me.

    And yes, looks like you've got a little crested baby.
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. TTownChics

    TTownChics Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you! We've been talking and sitting with them. I hope they come around soon, I don't like them being stressed.
     
  7. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

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    You have received good advice. I would like to add that if they feel cornered, that makes it worse. Now, sometimes, that's unavoidable - but remember that when you work around them. I feel it's their survival instincts kicking in. They are small and vulnerable and it seems that at around 3 weeks of age, they suddenly realize it.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. gilbert2

    gilbert2 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There is so much good advice here! I only wanted to add this: I whistle a short tune before even going to their area (first in the garage, and later in their outdoor place). After many days, they came to recognize this tune, and associate it with being fed, since i always brought food and a water change when whistling. And then whenever I brought peas (good old frozen peas, defrosted), I would whistle the tune first. BTW, peas are truly crack for ducks! It is not an exaggeration.
    I am in the minority here, but I do not believe that ducks are here for us humans to pet, hold, and put in our laps. Sorry, that is my belief. I am perfectly satisfied that my little babies will come when I whistle or call, and stay about 4-feet away from me. It is not a breach of loyalty; it is not a lack of love on their part. I feel that if you need to pet something, get a cat.
     
    2 people like this.
  9. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

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    I also have little songs and sayings I use around the ducks. One simple one is, "duck, duck, duck." And I start before I come into sight.
     
  10. lomine

    lomine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes! Peas are like crack to ducks. Mine go nuts for them too, no matter how often they get them.
     

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