Welsh Harlequin Questions Mostly Relating To Building A Duck House

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Mitsukuni, Sep 10, 2016.

  1. Mitsukuni

    Mitsukuni Just Hatched

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    Sep 10, 2016
    Hello, I'm new to this so I'm really sorry if I cause an inconvenience to anyone. Please tell me if I'm doing so, so I can correct it.

    I've never had ducks and I'm trying to get Welsh Harlequin eggs off of online. Either from a farm like Metzer or another website like Ebay.

    - If anyone has bought eggs from online, how many males and females did you get? I'm worried about getting all males or all females.

    - Also, how big do Welsh Harlequins get?

    Anyways, I'm trying to build a duck house before getting the ducks because I've read many posts about how quickly ducks get big.

    - How many square feet of space do I need for each WH? (I read on other forums that 2ft-6ft, but is 2ft too small for WH? I'm gonna try to keep them outside of their house as much as possible (except maybe during the winter).)

    - What would be a recommended height for a duck house? (I've read like 2 ft-4ft, but is that the same for all ducks?)

    - Would the ducks be better if the house was raised?

    - If I ventilate the top of the box, do I have to cover it with the wire covering, will it be enough ventilation for them, and will they still be warm enough in the winter?

    Sorry that this is kinda long, I'm just worried I'm gonna mess up something. Thank you.
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    This is no inconvenience, this is exactly what the Duck Forum is for.[​IMG]

    I haven't hatched eggs, sometimes they come out mostly drakes (boys), and that is unsafe for any females. A recommended male to female ratio is 1 drake to 3 or more females. So if you are hatching, you need a plan for dealing with extra drakes.


    I would go with as much room as you can manage for their shelter in case the weather requires them to be kept in for more than just overnight. So I would go with the 6 square feet. Duck house height depends somewhat on the overall design. Our first duck house was 4 feet high, and a foot off the ground. I had a Dutch door on the side (two parts - a top and a bottom half of the door) for me, and a sliding door at the end for the ducks, out onto their porch (covered in half inch metal hardware cloth) and a full size door at the other end of their porch.

    The Dutch door enabled me to open the top half and clean the bedding - I could easily reach everywhere in the 4ft x 8ft shelter from the Dutch door.

    When that shelter proved too cold for some of the ducks in the coldest part of winter, I moved them into a shelter with 7 foot ceilings (that stays above 40F). The advantage there is that the shelter is much larger and I can simply walk into it to do "room service."

    So please consider your own physical comfort when deciding on heights. Also consider you may need to pick up a duck for some reason, and you need to be able to examine the bedding for hidden eggs.

    If I recall, Welsh Harlequins are 6 to 8 pounds - someone correct me if I am wrong, I am citing this from memory. They are probably no more than 15 inches tall. Again, someone please verify.

    I don't think the ducks are always better off with a raised house. It is nice for preventing things from digging under the house, but ramps need to be very gently sloped, somewhere I read no more than 30%, and some ducks just don't like ramps. Ours has a very gentle, short ramp, wider than the door.
     
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  3. Mitsukuni

    Mitsukuni Just Hatched

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    Sep 10, 2016

    Thank you, a lot. If you didn't tell me about the slope of the ramp, the ducks would probably not appreciate the steepness I would've given it. And I'm trying to have the top open up or one of the sides so I can acess it easier without having to build a huge duck house. Thank you!
     
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Our first duck house has Dutch doors (a top and a bottom that open independently) so that I usually opened only the top door and cleaned and worked on bedding without needing to open the bottom.
     
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