What to put in duck yard?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Henrik Petersson, Dec 27, 2015.

  1. Henrik Petersson

    Henrik Petersson Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 9, 2009
    Karlskrona, Sweden
    I'm planning on getting ducks. I know all about the house/coop, and the pool/pond. Now for their yard, i.e. their fenced-in outside area.

    What should I put there, besides the pool and the house?

    Are the ducks like chickens and want a lot of bushes? Or do ducks prefer a large open area?

    If not straight-up bushes, should I put a few little shelters here and there, for shade and sense of security?

    I gather ducks have rather sensitive feet; does this mean I should avoid boulders and stuff in the yard?

    Should the area be grass-covered? I've read that ducks don't eat much grass.

    Enough of the questions - you get the idea.

    Thanks in advance!
  2. needlessjunk

    needlessjunk Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 19, 2014
    Round Rock, TX
    My ducks eat a lot of grass and having multiple shelters is a good idea. It's always better for them to be able to get away from Hawks and give them a break from the elements when they want. Bushes and srubs are good too. Mine love to hang out in mine but I had to put rocks around them and in them to discourage them from making nests in there. Depending on the size of the area and how many ducks they can distroy all plant life very quickly.
  3. Henrik Petersson

    Henrik Petersson Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 9, 2009
    Karlskrona, Sweden
    Thank you! Just what I wanted to know.

    We will probably have a net roof to keep the hawks out... But the ducks won't know that. ;)
  4. TLWR

    TLWR Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 10, 2010
    southern AL
    In the heat of the summer, my ducks and chicken will hang out under shrubs in the shade.
    They also head for the pond under the tree or shrubs when the hawk is out as well.

    So I'd provide some shrubs that will provide shade/coverage for when they need it - or some sort of structure instead of shrubs.
  5. LadyIsadora

    LadyIsadora Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 14, 2015
    My ducks dont eat a lot of grass, but they pack away the broad leafed weeds like dandelions.
    I plant kale, squash, pumpkin, comfrey and lettuces around the yard, try to protect them so they can grow a bit then take down the barrier so they can party. Some I leave carelessly fenced so they can eat the leaves off through the fence, but not eat it all the way to the ground. This has worked fairly well.

    Lots of shade spots around the yard.

    Lots of buckets of water around the yard. Its not a secret ducks love water. I place buckets about every 20 feet or so around the yard in the summer, it encourages them to forage more and when I go around the yard dumping and refreshing the buckets, well you have never see happier noodling ducks. They will jump off the pond and follow me around doing the chores so they can noodle in the puddles.

    Ducks sensitive feet arent what they seem and having too much flat hard surface actually exacerbates bumblefoot conditions. So vary that terrain. Keep it interesting.

    Thats what has worked for me, good luck to you!
  6. Henrik Petersson

    Henrik Petersson Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 9, 2009
    Karlskrona, Sweden
    Thanks, guys! [​IMG]

    Any tips on how to vary the terrain, besides plants? I'm thinking:
    - Rocks, smaller and larger, to block line of sight, climb/fly up on and use as vantage point, or lie/stand next to for sense of security/blocking winds and sunlight.
    - Branches and logs laid on the ground, for the same reasons.
    - Boxes, lean-to shelters and all kinds of little "houses".
    - Small mounds of dirt. Or maybe just make the "lawn" a little more "hilly", i.e. build said mounds of dirt before I sow that grass I've intended.
    - Branches put horizontally at various heights, to fly up on. I don't intend to clip their wings - that means they'll like to fly up on stuff occasionally, right?
  7. cayugaducklady

    cayugaducklady Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 20, 2015
    New England USA
    I'm new to ducks. I planted a native grass/ cover crop mix in my duck pen and duck yard area. I mixed in some mini clover so I'd have some green cover in the winter.

    My four ducks really enjoyed being able to be under the tall grass (18-30 inches tall depending on species) in the hot weather and to provide cover from raptors. My girls are in an completely enclosed pen.

    I have a horizontal ramp that goes from the pen ground to the top of their duck pond ( a stock tank). They use it for sunning and elevation.

    I had some decaying tree stumps in their when they were smaller and they never used them or went near them so i took them out.

    THey enjoyed harvesting the wild oats from the oat grass and the millet from the millet plants.

    Next spring I'm going to plant some native grasses that prefer moist/wet areas near the water features/pan in their pen and I'm going to plant a northeast forage quality grass for them. They eat a lot more grass than I thought they would os i provide the best forage possible.

    I use outsidepride.com to select seed. I've had excellent germination rates from everything I've purchased from there.
    1 person likes this.

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