Why do my ducks hate me??

birdsqueezer

In the Brooder
Nov 30, 2021
12
17
21
I have 2 young ducks, almost but not completely grew their feathers. For some reason, they seem to hate me??? I got them when they were young, but I think they never imprinted on me. I give them treats and play but they always run away! They bite me for no reason and don't let me pet them,. I've been really gentle to them their whole lives and it's making me really sad and confused. Nothing like my friends ducks who are really nice and lovely.
 

Brooke_R

Songster
Sep 15, 2020
204
473
191
I have 2 young ducks, almost but not completely grew their feathers. For some reason, they seem to hate me??? I got them when they were young, but I think they never imprinted on me. I give them treats and play but they always run away! They bite me for no reason and don't let me pet them,. I've been really gentle to them their whole lives and it's making me really sad and confused. Nothing like my friends ducks who are really nice and lovely.
That’s how probably most ducks are. That’s how most of mine were as ducklings. Unless you spend most of your time holding them when they’re super young that’ll probably happen it seems. They don’t hate you that’s just how they are. Treats may help
 

birdsqueezer

In the Brooder
Nov 30, 2021
12
17
21
That’s how probably most ducks are. That’s how most of mine were as ducklings. Unless you spend most of your time holding them when they’re super young that’ll probably happen it seems. They don’t hate you that’s just how they are. Treats may help
Thank you!! I was SO worried I was going something wrong. Is there anything else I could do to make them more loving? I don't want my ducks to freak out every time I visit them
 

birdsqueezer

In the Brooder
Nov 30, 2021
12
17
21
What kind of ducks do you have? Some of friendlier than others. I have Muscovy ducks who do not like cuddling but we still respect each other.
I don't think they hate you. Maybe what you see as friendly and playful, they see as threatening. Try just sitting still and see if they will come to you.
Khaki Campbells, I think. When I stand still they walk right past me, instead following each other around. I can hear them breathing really hard like they're scared, every time they see me. What can I try that would be more gentle to them? I spend a lot of time lying down right next to them and while one of them walks up to me and lays down, the other still avoids me like the devil and refuses to eat out my hand, raising it's neck in shock like I was trying to grab it. I pick them up sometimes too, one is calm but the other ends up scratching me and getting feathers all over me. Is it because of that? They also definitely don't like laying on their back when I pick them up, even if I cover their belly. Is that normal behavior? I think it is
 

Isadora

If at first you don't fricassee, fry, fry a hen
Premium Feather Member
Mar 29, 2021
5,398
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Khaki Campbells, I think. When I stand still they walk right past me, instead following each other around. I can hear them breathing really hard like they're scared, every time they see me. What can I try that would be more gentle to them? I spend a lot of time lying down right next to them and while one of them walks up to me and lays down, the other still avoids me like the devil and refuses to eat out my hand, raising it's neck in shock like I was trying to grab it. I pick them up sometimes too, one is calm but the other ends up scratching me and getting feathers all over me. Is it because of that? They also definitely don't like laying on their back when I pick them up, even if I cover their belly. Is that normal behavior? I think it is
Being laid on their back makes them vulnerable to predators which would make them afraid, no duck would like to be held that way. Most ducks don't like to be restrained for the same reason, even on their feet.
 

birdsqueezer

In the Brooder
Nov 30, 2021
12
17
21
Being laid on their back makes them vulnerable to predators which would make them afraid, no duck would like to be held that way. Most ducks don't like to be restrained for the same reason, even on their feet.
I had my suspicions but now I know for sure, thank you!!
 

Yardmom

Songster
May 3, 2018
1,051
1,480
206
Waterford, PA
Ducks are not like a cat or a dog. They do not naturally like to be handled. Your ducks are at an age when they are more skittish than normal. They will calm some when they are older. For now you can spend time giveing treats and spending time near them in ways that they realize you are not a predator and can be trusted. Depending on how scared they are, you may need to sit still and not touch them until they are more comfortable with you.
 

BullChick

Wrangler
Premium Feather Member
9 Years
Apr 17, 2012
46,088
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They are evilll!!
Joking. My dominant drakes would nip me during mating season. They were sweet otherwise.
Editing to add that they left the toddler alone.
 

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