WHen can Cayugas and Blue Swedish ducklings go outside to stay?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by chickenlisa, May 15, 2007.

  1. chickenlisa

    chickenlisa Invincible Summer

    Apr 9, 2007
    I have 3 cayugas and 3 Blue Swedish ducklings; they will be 3 weeks old this week. I am taking them outside each day to hang out in a puppy pen next to the adult duck pen, play in water,eat grass and worms,etc. But I'm still bringing them inside to their brooder box each night. I still have the light on them in that box. I'm wondering when is the best time to leave them outside, when and how is the best time and way to add them into my chicken pen (50 6 week olds) and then utimately when is the best time to incorporate my adult pair into that whole mix.
    Can anyone advise me what they've done or what I should do? I want to end up with my 2 big pens open to each other with my 4 adult chickens (3 hens & 1 Roo), 2 adult Blue Swedish ducks (1 duck & 1 drake), 50 young chickens and 6 young ducklings all together and happy. I can do this slowly as I have 2 separate pens and 1 chicken tractor and 1 movable dog pen to use in the meantime.
    Thanks for any help or ideas.
  2. chickenlisa

    chickenlisa Invincible Summer

    Apr 9, 2007
    anyone have experience doing this? Help please?
    Last edited: May 16, 2007
  3. Sakura

    Sakura In the Brooder

    Feb 16, 2007
    Cantonment, Florida
    I don't know at all about mixing flocks, although I think I did see a few posts when I first came here.

    I do remember reading that ducks start off needing 90 degrees temp at hatching, and it goes down by 5 degrees per week. Also, ours are just about 2 months old and appear to have their full adult feathers in. From time to time, the daytime temps got a little lower than recommended while they were outside as they were growing up. I do think maybe this made them more tolerant of cooler temps than they might have otherwise been, but then we live in north Florida so it wasn't TOO cold. We did keep the light on them at night until they were about 5 weeks, I think. I just watched them carefully, and they never huddled or seemed to be cold, so I think they were fine.

    I guess a lot depends on the temps where you live, and how much protection the night coop gives them.

    I did get worried yesterday when they were out in the rain (off and on thunderstorm in fact) and it was quite windy as well. It felt a bit cold to me with the wind. However, they didn't want to be brought in, and just kept playing in the rain, digging in the dirt, eating, and doing ducky things. They never seemed cold, never ruffled feathers, huddled, or tried to lie down or get too near each other. They really seemed to be having a grand time. I did make sure they dried well when we brought them in, and they are still fine today.

    (Two of ours are most likely black swedish, at least at last guess.)

    The only reason I haven't moved them outside permanently at night is lack of a predator-proof pen. I put them in a run covered in chicken wire during the day, in case of hawks, but it is not at all safe against raccoons, cats, and whatever else might come, since we live in the woods and have breaks in our chain-link fencing. But I hope to finish overhauling a rabbit-hutch-style cage I received from craigslist by Saturday, cuz they NEED to move outside.

    I guess this isn't much help, really, to all your questions. Just wanted to say what I could since you didn't have any answers yet. I hope someone can help more with the mixing of flocks. I'd do a search of posts and see if anyone has posted on that?

    I'm going to be having that problem myself (hopefully) in another month or two, as I was finally able to order some chicks to be delivered June2. And I just bought wire to fence a large tractor, and I don't want to have to pay for another!

    Best of luck with them!

    Sakura's Mom (Sakura stays signed in.)
  4. Critter Crazy

    Critter Crazy Songster

    Apr 19, 2007
    Binghamton, NY
    I let my Ducks stay out side at the age of 4-5 weeks. I keep them in a seperate section of the coop, so they can see everyone and get used to them. I do this for about a week. then I just let them go and have a blast. I have a mixed flock, 30 chickens, 14 chicks, 1 Adult duck, and 4 Ducklings. They have all gotten along fabulously.
    Mr.and Mrs.Greenwood likes this.
  5. chickenlisa

    chickenlisa Invincible Summer

    Apr 9, 2007
    Thanks guys...do you keep a tub/pool of water in that coop where all the chickens and ducks are mixed? Do the chickens ever try to get in the water? I can do that as soon as the 6 baby ducks are old enough. Right now (in NJ) its warm to hot in the daytime and cooler at night. So I bring them in at night back to their ever growing brooder box with light, and they spend the days out in our big dog exercise pen, eating grass, jumping in and out of a tub of water and seem totally happy. Soon, I'll put them in our young chicken pen-protected at first so they are safe, then eventually, put them all in with our grown (4) chickens.
    If anyone else has their story to tell, please do so.
  6. LouManChu

    LouManChu In the Brooder

    May 14, 2007
    I 5 jumbo pekin ducks 5 wks old
    2 mallards 7 wks
    2 cayuga ducks 5 wks
    7 Broadbreasted Bronze turkeys 5 wk
    2 White Holland turkeys 5 wk
    about 50 chickens mixed 5-9 wks old
    4 White Chinese geese 3 wks
    4 Toulouse Geese 3 wks
    2 African Geese 5 wks old
    all live together with no problems at all.
    the 8 3 week old geese get put in a dog kennel at night in the covered pen about 16x30 foot with so they get to know it safe to sleep with everybody.
    and at 9am they all get let out in the fenced in backyard to roam eat grass and play,
    in the back yard I have a 10 foot by 2 foot high children pool for the ducks and geese to play in and in the big pen i dug a sloping hole in one corner and feeled it with water for the younger ducks and geese can learn to swim and get use to the water and do it without the bigger ones picking on them, since this is S.carolina there a lot of clay so the water stays all day, the chickens and turkeys use it to drink out of also if they dont want to go to there water.
    sometimes they flop over in there but it sloped enouth the they just run out , as for the big pool I have stones in and out of it so anything that flys in it or jumps in, can get out without drowning.
    I watched a cuple turkeys jump up on the side to get a drink and over shoot and land in the water but promtly get on the stones and get out.
    my ducks and geese stay in my house for a week or two then go in a rabbit like cage in the chicken pen with a heat lamp for another week or two till I see them start climbing the front wire try to get with the rest of the flock, then I let them run with the flock during the day and get put in the kennel at knight, till I see they can handle themselves with the flock.
    well hope this helps.........

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