Will ducks eat my garden?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by 10AcreChick, Apr 10, 2017.

  1. 10AcreChick

    10AcreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 6, 2015
    Central Missouri
    OK, all you duck experts. We have two, probably female, Rouen ducks. Our first ducks ever, and man, are we learning a lot! They are SUPPOSED to be closed in with my free range chickens every night, but don't seem to be much interested in doing that. It took me an hour to get one of them out from underneath the chicken house last night (yeah, I'll be chicken fencing THAT off tonight!). And to add to the angst, something has been stealing my chickens during the day, and I really don't want to lose these ducks, so we can't just leave them out at night. Also, our back enclosure with a 6 foot fence is going to become the "Butcher Boys" domain this summer with all the roosters this last hatch is sure to have produced. So we can't use that for the ducks, even if I was sure whatever is eating my flock couldn't get over that fence.

    My garden is fenced with a 6 foot fence, and I happen to be slowly digging a little fish pond out of the middle of it, so I was thinking maybe they should just become "Garden Ducks". I pretty much grow everything, though. Will they eat all my veggies?? Are they omnivorous like the chickens? They are really shy of people, so this might also help them get used to me, since I am out there in the garden almost every day.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Krazyquilts

    Krazyquilts Chillin' With My Peeps Premium Member

    The ducks will probably turn your little fish pond into a nice big mud puddle. Ducks love to make mud.

    As far as eating your garden, yep. They'll do that. They'll even eat the dirt. The only thing mine haven't destroyed is the chives and they still rummage through the chives a regular basis checking for bugs. I'm going to try fencing my ducks out of the garden beds with 3' high chicken wire.

    Ducks are amazing for finding bugs, though, so they will still get supervised time in the garden, like 10 minutes here and there. Enough time to eat bugs but hopefully not enough time to eat the veggies.

    I've heard that ducks have to trained to go into a structure at night. We started locking ours up in their house when they were around 3 months (I think). They were in a small movable temporary pen during the day so it wasn't hard to catch them and put them to bed each night,

    How old are your ducks?
     
  3. 10AcreChick

    10AcreChick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 6, 2015
    Central Missouri
    They are about 4 weeks old I think. They are getting big, and one is even starting to quack a little! I think they are both girls, as they look very much alike.
    So putting them in the garden is a no go. We fenced off the underside of the chicken coop last night, and it wasn't a big deal to get them to go in. I had no idea they wouldn't jump up to get in the back "poop" door or use the ramp, they just stood there and peeped. I had to lift them up. DH said he's "got this". They are his ducks, he's going to make them a little ground level area outside the coop that we can lock them into. And have their little pool (until we get a little pond built) right outside it so they will sleep there. We have a perfect little area underneath some outside storage bins attached to the main coop that we can just box in.
    Problem solved! Thanks for your input!
     

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