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Trying to change habits for a cleaner pen...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Maddiesmom, May 13, 2010.

  1. Maddiesmom

    Maddiesmom Hatching

    May 12, 2010
    After reading through this forum, I am anxious to get more feedback. My ducks are about 1 1/2 years old. I have five Pekin/Mallard hybrids. Two males, three females. I have a raised pen that they go into at night (they line up on the ramp at dusk ready to go inside!!) and I let them out first thing in the morning. I have always left food and water inside their pen, but not in their sleeping area. Currently we have the inside of the pen lined with wheat straw and we have to clean it out about twice a week. For those who have replied to this question and are knowledgeable, you are saying we can put them in at night without food and water?

    That would save on the constant cleaning and cost for straw and food!! My ducks are huge! I don't know if it's because they are spoiled rotten (since we give them food and water all night long!) or just the combination of the hybrid. They swim in our pond and forge all day and only get the feed and water at night. Any suggestions? Would it be ok to have them go without food and water at night and just leave their feed out during the day when they forge?

    Thanks for any response!
  2. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    They still need food and water at night. I think 5 weeks is the cut off. Try using baking sheets under the food dishes. You can also use deep plastic tubs with openings on the side where they can stick their heads in and reach for the food and water dishes inside of it. That way they cannot play with it. This method of course depends on their size. Most of the time they get bored at night and start to play around. Mine have plastic toys for cats that rattle and boy do they play around.
  3. chickboss

    chickboss Songster

    Mar 23, 2010
    Quote:LOL, I think this question gets asked about tiny ducklings a lot! OP said 1 1/2 years, not weeks. [​IMG] Totally putting cat toys in with my ducklings today after reading this! Great idea! From what I've read on here, as long as they have access to the food and water during the day, they should be fine if you take it away at night.
  4. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    Man, again, I should have had my coffee first. Can't read. LOL
    I would do the plastic tub thing with holes on the side and the dishes inside. They can reach, but they can't make a mess.
  5. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    Here is an image of the ones I'm using. They are plastic and can be washed easily. My ducks can pick them up and they love the rattle sound. You get them at Walmart. Katharina
  6. SunAngel

    SunAngel Songster

    May 20, 2008
    Chambersburg, Pa.
    My ducks have never had water and food inside their house at night, since they reached about 6 months of age. They seem to do just fine and their house stays nice and dry! They are 2 yrs old now and are very healthy.
  7. Red Maple Farms

    Red Maple Farms Wish Granted

    Feb 25, 2010
    NE Wisconsin
    We use outside wire enclosed feeding stations that are accesible from inside the coop with our brooders . They always have food and water available. The mess inside the coop is limited.

  8. kipepeo

    kipepeo Songster

    May 26, 2009
    NC KS
    Quote:I had some of those and just threw them in with the chicks they coudl care less guess will give them to the ducks [​IMG]
  9. chickboss

    chickboss Songster

    Mar 23, 2010
    Quote:[​IMG] I figured it was a morning thing, I am the same way! I think I have a few similar toys lying around somewhere, this batch of ducklings are just so busy, I think they will love them!
  10. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    They may be intimidated first, but then their curiosity will take over. Mine ignored it for a full day, and then once sudden it was party time. It helps if you throw a couple of peas around the toys. Ironically my cat never cared for those toys either. She prefers to go outside, catch something, and let it loose in the house. And then you try to catch what ever it is, including the cat and 4 dogs. A nut house to say at least.
    Last edited: May 13, 2010

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