What are your best practices fir Ducks in Winter?

Kaw

Songster
Oct 19, 2020
128
262
136
I am reading theough so many posts to find answers but I may still be asking a question from another thread...
We use hay and by default a deep litter method. However the hay is akways soaking wet...ducks. I read they need to be warm and dry; and that they are susceptible to mold (which must flourish with the food that spills in the wet hay). Our ducks have a shelter with a small enclosed pen at night. Food and water are in the oen. During the day they free range.
What are dome of your best practices and tips?
thank you for sharing!!
 

Quatie

Crowing
Oct 16, 2020
2,356
11,604
441
Northern California
Do you keep water in your coop? That can make a big mess, and it is very difficult to keep the coop dry with water in there.

How many ducks to do you have and how big is the coop? I had an issue when I first got ducks. I thought I made my coop big enough, and it was wet from too many ducks. We expands and things were cleaner and no longer wet.
 

cheezenkwackers

Crowing
5 Years
Aug 28, 2016
1,515
2,577
312
Memphis, TN
I have found pine shavings (the finer the better) to absorb a lot better than straw or hay. I have shaving both in their little house and their covered pen area. If my temperatures are going to be really cold (20 F or below) I put hay or straw on top of the shavings in their house. If we are going down to single digits (which doesn't happen a lot in TN) I fill a milk jug with hot tap water and put it in their little house. Even with the door open to the covered pen area,, the water in the jug doesn't freeze. Until the water is frozen it gives off a small amount of heat. BTW, mine do have water and a small amount of food in their pen area. I work and sometimes get home just in time to put them to bed (they free range in a fenced garden during the day). So they are hungry for dinner. Because of this, I do have to add more shavings to the pen area just about every day because it gets wet. The little house only needs spot cleaning once or twice a week.
 

Kaw

Songster
Oct 19, 2020
128
262
136
Thank you! I find their bedding is just wet constantly. It’s the dry part, which seems important in winter, and which has me baffled.
I mean their hay is one soaking matt of hay. (I assume that’s normal). I add fresh hay on top.
How does it not mold u derneath?
 

416bigbore

I am A Big Boy Now!
Premium Feather Member
Jun 11, 2020
7,882
66,663
1,086
NC
Maybe the link below will help you? Any bedding used on the bare ground is going to be harder to keep warm and dry over a coop with a wood floor of some type.

Even though we have bare ground in our coop for the floor, I use wheat straw and keep it fluffed twice a day and us a small fan on low to move the air to help keep the bedding dry. It's not a perfect solution, but it does help. Best of Luck. :)

https://www.tyrantfarms.com/whats-t...e leaves, wet straw and,it's going to get wet.
 
Mar 26, 2020
1,133
2,079
261
Southern Vermont
My coop is off the ground, i did a mesh floor and used stall mats on top of it, i like it, doesn’t encourage mold growth and it’s easy on their feet. I dont see why stall mats wouldn’t work on the ground in the same way. I have a trash can full of shavings out there, when i let them out and set up for nighttime in the morning I just throw a couple scoops around, keeps things fresh and dry i clean it out routinely, but top dressing sure does make a big difference.
 

21hens-incharge

Moderator
BYC Staff
Premium Feather Member
7 Years
Mar 9, 2014
26,782
111,266
1,722
Northern Colorado
I am using large flake pine shavings in the coop. I keep the south facing window open. The West windows are open just a couple inches and there are additional vents.
Each morning after I let them out I use a small rake to fluff the bedding.
I do have to fully clean it once a week to remove the poo.
 

Duckbreeder2020

Crossing the Road
Sep 18, 2020
2,269
25,255
751
New Jersey
I have a coop with a mix of chickens and ducks, we get huge gray garbage cans and installed feeders in them and put them in the coop. We scatter dead leaves, straw and hay on the floor and they all seem fine so far, we also installed a heater timer. It goes on at 6 PM and turns off at 6 AM
 

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