Register or log in:

Farming Friends Forum » Ducks

New runner ducks!

(23 posts)

Tags:


  1. yanky
    Member

    Hi Everyone,
    Taking delivery of two gorgeous fawn runner ducks next w/e. am all ready for them but just have a couple of questions. Have set up a big ducky pool but do I still have to have a big duck water container for them to drink from?
    Also I'd like to leave their feeding dish in their pen (not their house)all the time as I can be out but a lot of advice says they should be fed twice a day.
    Need a bit of advice from all you clever duck keepers out there.
    Ps they will be free range most of day!

    Posted 4 years ago #
  2. duskhunter
    Member

    Hi Yanky, bet you're excited waiting for your ducks, lovely colour too.
    They will drink the water they swim in even if you give them drinking water too and will walk and try to swim in water if their container is big enough for them to get into. They are mucky critters but lovely.

    Ducks don't really overeat in my experience so you can leave food for them all the time but it may encourage rats and of course wild birds will come for a free meal.

    A lot of us use food to get them to go into the safety of a duck house at night. Most of the winter that is all my ducks wanted, a night feed and left any breakfast I gave them, but now they are looking for just a little extra in the morning. They let me know when I let them out by following me to the feed stable if they want breakfast. If you feed them in their shed have some left in the morning when you let them out you know they have more than they want.

    They should always have access to water if they have access to food but it doesn't have to be a lot or they will just make their duck house so messy. You can put their wheat recommended for ducks rather than a poultry mix for chickens in water and feed them that way sorts both things at once.

    By the way being free range they will feed themselves with worms and they love snails eat the shells whole. I always save mine when I am gardening and throw them to them for a treat.
    Good Luck

    Posted 4 years ago #
  3. yanky
    Member

    Thanks Duskhunter that's all really helpful. My one spoke in the wheel which I didn't mention was that they are sharing the accommodation with my 2 newest hens who don't perch. I know to putt lots of straw in for warmth & that's no prob but I was going to just have poultry pellets for both hens & the ducks! Should I not?? Or could I feed them all with a mixture of poultry & duck food. I have housing for the food in the pen to keep it dry& it is off the ground. I have never had probs with wild birds (perhaps as it has a mesh roof over the run) or rats! I know tho there is always a first time!
    Yan.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  4. dallascriftins
    Member

    Make sure the pellets are suitable for mixed Poultry, dedicated chicken feed is not as it may contain a coccidiostat which is not good for Ducks afaik.

    The Ducks will make the straw quite messy
    I change mine often twice, a week in wet weather especially if they have been paddling in mud as their bodies will bring in a fair bit of water and the poop is pretty liquid as well.

    Unless your run is mud free any water they have access to will been turned into mud soup near instantly, provide drinkers for the Chickens

    Our Chickens also barge the ducks out of the way to get to the food and we have twice as many Ducks as we do Chickens! So you best see how it goes.

    We house ours separately but many people (with roosting Chickens) have the Ducks on the floor and the Chickens up on perches with a poop board to protect the Ducks.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  5. yanky
    Member

    Thanks that is all really helpful! I'll see how it goes!
    Yan

    Posted 4 years ago #
  6. duskhunter
    Member

    Hi Yan,
    Have you got your ducks yet?

    Posted 4 years ago #
  7. yanky
    Member

    Hi Duskhunter
    Yes they arrived yesterday in a snowstorm-typical! They are gorgeous. Had to do a bit of jiggery pokery to shut them in the house & find a home for the two chickens that were in there. However they now in spare henhouse & fine. Opened pop hole for ducks this am but they didn't come out! Ended up having to push them out. In the end they quacked round the enclosure obviously terrified & are now hiding in the entry tunnel to the house??? I'm presuming that this is maybe normal behaviour & they will sort themselves out when they are used to their new surroundings????? Help!!
    Yan

    Posted 4 years ago #
  8. duskhunter
    Member

    Hi Yan,
    Two ducks may find their new home stranger than when they are joining an established group who will make things seem more 'normal'

    I have always had reasonable numbers of ducks 7 brothers and a goose to start with, they gave each other confidence. Now if two join the group it tells the newcomers that this is 'duck world' you will fit in here - just a little pecking order to sort out - but they know the place is safe for ducks, they see the resident ducks all confident and settled.

    When I gave two of our 7 week old ducks to a friend she said they were quite skittish and alarmed by everything and panicked if she went near them, they did of course settle in time.

    From what I read about people with just a few tame ducks they seem to spend time with them and handle them a lot. When any of our ducks falls ill they do become much tamer due to having extra contact and a lot of cuddles when they need treatment even though they do not like being picked up for quite a while.

    You will win through I'm sure. I don't know what others would advise but I would be inclined not to give them the opportunity to hide away, so that they have to get used to your being around. I talk to mine a lot and they get used to my voice and respond. Your neighbours might think you're potty but mine know I am so no embarrassment there. Good luck

    Posted 4 years ago #
  9. yanky
    Member

    Thanks Duskhunter.
    This afternoon I did shoosh them out of the shed & they very tentatively had a good look round the pond, the food, the enclosure & me! Thought they might dip heads in the pond but no! After about 5 mins they went back inside & haven't come back out! Maybe they're thinking the accommodation isn't as 5* as they're used to!!!
    Tomorrow I am going to get them out of the shed & shut it so they can go about the enclosure. It was such a lovely day today felt they should be out in it!!!
    No neighbours so no one to know I'm doolally! I talk to the hens & guineas all the time too!!
    Yan

    Posted 4 years ago #
  10. duskhunter
    Member

    When we first had our three geese they wouldn't go on the pond so I guided them to it and then 'encouraged' them to go on it to let them feel it, when they have been on and off for a few times.
    The two 7 week old ducklings we gave to a friend would not go on her pond for weeks and then loved it I expect yours will take to their pool much sooner.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  11. yanky
    Member

    Will let you know.
    Thanks.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  12. yanky
    Member

    Well they've found the pond & whooped it up a couple of times in it! Now they are standing drying off! It's really cold here-don't know how they can bear it!
    Yan

    Posted 4 years ago #
  13. yanky
    Member

    Ducks have settled in really well! Not nearly so frightened & loving the pond & any other available water. Also not so skittish with the hens & vice versa!
    Thanks
    Yan.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  14. duskhunter
    Member

    Hello Yan,
    Good to see your ducks are quite at home with you now are they laying yet? I'm not sure how old they are?

    Posted 4 years ago #
  15. yanky
    Member

    No neither do I??? Going to find out tho! What age do they start laying?
    Yan

    Posted 4 years ago #
  16. duskhunter
    Member

    Can be anything from 16 weeks though some have found it to be even earlier!

    Posted 4 years ago #
  17. yanky
    Member

    Oh right! I think they might be 9 months to a year but I have asked breeder!
    Yan

    Posted 4 years ago #
  18. runner ducks dont lay as many eggs per year as campbells so id imagine you will start getting your first eggs this spring and one of my campbells layed her first egg at 16 weeks which was very young the average age is around 26 weeks old in most ducks

    mo x
    Posted 4 years ago #
  19. yanky
    Member

    Thanks will keep an eye out!
    Yan

    Posted 4 years ago #
  20. yanky
    Member

    I've been told they will lay in the spring! Found an egg this morning but think one of the hens is laying in the ducks bed. Saw it go in although it is quite small for her???
    Yan

    Posted 4 years ago #
  21. Devon Cream
    Member

    Are these going to be your first duck eggs?

    Posted 4 years ago #
  22. duskhunter
    Member

    The ducks decide when to lay they don't go by our calendar it could well be a duck egg and they are often small at first.

    Posted 4 years ago #
  23. yanky
    Member

    Yes these will be first duck eggs!
    Oh it's exciting! They have really come out of themselves & have been all round the garden following the hens. I've been chatting to them (nutcase) but I think they respond to that. I love them already!!!
    Yan.

    Posted 4 years ago #

RSS feed for this topic

Reply

You must log in to post.