What do I provide for ducks?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Summer98, Nov 11, 2011.

  1. Summer98

    Summer98 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What do ducks require? What kind of food, shelter, etc. is required to have ducks on the farm? I am interested in having a couple of runner ducks for pets.
     
  2. DUCKGIRL89

    DUCKGIRL89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Food: I feed my ducks chicken scratch with lots of veggies and a fryed egg sometimes. Lots of people on here use "flock raiser" but all my ducks have been raised on chicken scratch their whole lives...

    Water: ducks will much better enjoy their life with a kiddie pool in their pen. This is what I use
    [​IMG]

    Fencing: duck MUST have a very safe secure pen unless you want your ducks going missing often.

    Snacks: ducks LOVE peas! I have easily befrended all 8 of my ducks useing peas and other garden veggies! I highly recomend them [​IMG]

    Shelter: I made my self a duck coop useing old pallets found.on my moms farm. This is my ducks shelter:
    [​IMG]

    Ducks and will be much happier if there is atleased two or three of them.

    if you want a good pet duck. I highly recomend welsh harlequins, rouens, and pekins! welsh harlequins are used for eggs, and rouens and pekins are/can be used for both meat and eggs... But if you are looking for good pets I would suddgest one of those breeds (but its totally up to you!) Hope thos helps!
     
  3. DUCKGIRL89

    DUCKGIRL89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh! Forgot to ad!.if you want a good hatchery I would get them from metzer farms, or holderreads!
     
  4. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

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    You can make things as complicated or as easy as you want - obviously they need to eat and drink- but they also need housing and protection from predators. Those 3 basics should be the minimum provided- but things like plants and landscaping to make an area duck friendly can be a good way to get you outside and spending more time with them as well.

    They can eat a very similar diet to chickens if they have freeranging time and can forage for bugs and such as well as pelletized grain feed. Water is a little different from chickens though- Ducks not only love to swim on a pond- but they will make a total mess of drinking water as well. They do require water deep enough to clean their nostrils and faces in- ad will drill holes in the ground around water containers if the ground gets muddy. they dont need a huge pond for swimming- a kiddy pool is great for just a couple of ducks.

    Most feed stores will carry a line of feed specific for duck, but in some cases they are only marginally different from chicken food - but do cost a bit more too.

    Keeping ducks in safe secure housing is very important. They do not roost ( apart form muscovies ) and most domestically kept ducks breed cannot fly. ( again- the muscovie is the odd one out- it can fly well as can the bantam breeds ( calls mallards ) and ornamental breeds ( mandarins wood ducks. ) There are a variety of predators - 4 legged and flying- that will take even a full grown duck at any chance so making sure that especially at night they are in a very secure shelter is important.

    Runners are a great duck with loads of personality- but if you want them as pets- hand raising them from day old in small numbers is the best way to keep hem tame and friendly. They can be a bit flighty- so daily handling while young will make sure they are more used to you and more likely to remain tamer when in adulthood.
     
  5. Summer98

    Summer98 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    What are some recommended breeds for pets (not meat)?
     
  6. DUCKGIRL89

    DUCKGIRL89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Welsh harlequins, rouens, and pekins... But pekins are loud!
     
  7. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

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    It can depend a bit on what you want in a duck- If you just want something with webbed feet that quacks- Pekins are great. If you want something a bit more pretty or colourful go for something else that you do like the look of. If noise may be an issue- a muscovy is a very quiet breed as they hardly make a noise at all. Within any breed the way you raise is can have a huge impact on how tame it will be when grown, and there is always exceptions to the breeds said to be the best " pets"
     
  8. ChickInDelight

    ChickInDelight Never an Empty Nest

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    My ducks free-range during the day, but despite the fact I live on a large farm, they stay close to home - even the flying mallards. A night house is necessary, but not a pen.

    If you free-range, you need less food. Mine all love Purina flockraiser.

    I have the same baby pool in the picture above, and mine love it. I would like to have a pool / pond with a drain because the water is dirtied in minutes.

    You want the house to be EZ to clean!!!!!

    Metzer farms does a good job of breed comparison. Pekins are friendly, Runners are nervous.... If you want to handle the ducks, you will want to confine them. Ducks do not like to be touched like chickens do.
     
  9. cat1994

    cat1994 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 12, 2010
    Southeast MO
    Quote:Call ducks usually make good pets though they can be very loud, I think Runner ducks make good pets also they look so silly lol
     
  10. TLWR

    TLWR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Runners make great pets. I have 2 of them.

    Our back 4 acres are fenced with field fencing. Their duck house (a dog house kit from lowes with a custom built door) is in the 'duck yard' which is just a small fenced in area right off our deck that used to belong to the dogs before the yard was fully fenced for a quick potty trip. Not that it will really keep anything out if it gets past the first fence.
    So housing - they need to be able to be safe at night (and the day, but locked up at night should be done too).


    Food - I started with flock raiser until they started laying and then changed to chicken layer pellets. If I could get flock raiser in pellet form here, I'd use that, but the chicken food works just fine. I also provide them with oyster shells for calcium. Mine are also out all day, so they find what they want to snack on out there. But if I don't fill their food dish, I hear about it!

    Water - something deep enough for them to dunk their heads is fine. But if you can provide something for them to swim in, you will see how much they enjoy it. I personally didn't like the look of their big blue pool in my backyard, so I built them a raised pond with landscape timbers. So now they have a nice sized pond to swim in and the dogs have a giant water dish with duck poop in it outside LOL


    I love having my ducks. When I wasn't working, I was out sitting with them daily. Now, I get home when it is dark out. I did tell them hi when I got home today and the sun was still in the sky LOL
    Runners have a great personality and if you raise a few at a time, they don't seem to be all that crazy. Mine used to hang out at the back door and knock when they wanted something until I booted them off the deck because I was tired of hosing poop off it. But they still come running each time we whistle for the dogs (it's great, the ducks listen better than 2 of the dogs LOL), when I walk out to leave for work in the morning (I sometimes get escorted to the garage and they sometimes stand at the gate and watch me leave), if they think I might have anything for them or just if they feel like being personable. They aren't about to run up and sit in my lap, but I consider them pretty friendly.
    They can be loud. Mine went through a loud mouth phase and now with the weather cooling off, they are getting loud again, but not all the time - just when they want something or have something they think the neighborhood should hear. They usually just quietly chat though.

    I still want a pekin, but I love having my runners.
     

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