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#56345 - 06/22/06 02:14 PM Mallard duckling found
TWT Offline
Feather

Registered: 10/08/04
Posts: 25
Loc: Virginia
Hey guys! I raise alot of chickens. Don't have much experience with ducks. That said, I have a week old Mallard duck that was found in the middle of a busy main street that I'm raising. You think she will incorporate somewhat with my flock? I'm already planning to build for her a little condo at the horse barn so she will have a seperate place to roost. Don't have much water, but i'm gonna change that also. Any advice would be appreciated.

-Todd

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#56346 - 06/22/06 11:32 PM Re: Mallard duckling found
Jrsygntbrdr1 Offline
Classroom Professor

Registered: 06/12/05
Posts: 2601
Loc: Arkansas
I would NOT put the Mallard duckling in with the flock right now. He could get picked on, eye plucked out, or even killed very fast in a flock setting. I don't believe that ducks roost, but I think they bed down. They don't really have the toes and grip power to hang onto a roost. I had a goose, he was already halfway grown, all feathers, when I put him in with 1 cockerel who was approx. 4 months old. The cockerel succeeded in poking my poor gosling's eye out. I nursed the eye with Neosporin, and the gosling let me do it without any struggle. His eye was fine after about a week and the cockerel got thrown into the pen with the big rooster to let him see what being picked on was all about. I'm just afraid with your duck being the only one of her kind in the flock, that she will be picked on mercilessly.

Good luck TWT!
Mikaela

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#56347 - 06/23/06 09:22 AM Re: Mallard duckling found
TWT Offline
Feather

Registered: 10/08/04
Posts: 25
Loc: Virginia
I won't put her where they can get to her for some time. Right now she is in my room, in a brooder with a log to play on, little pond, chick starter...I take her outside everyday. In about a week I plan to move her outside for good. But she will have her own little place to grow up in, nice and safe.

Thanks for the response,

-Todd

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#56348 - 06/23/06 12:33 PM Re: Mallard duckling found
CornerStone Offline
Coop Cleaner

Registered: 07/20/03
Posts: 161
Loc: Virginia
Avoid chick starter, get unmedicated gamebird or waterfowl starter crumbles.

Feed- It is very important not to feed waterfowl medicated starter crumbles. Medicated feeds are formulated for chicks only, which contains levels of medication that is toxic to waterfowl. Feed your birds a gamebird starter to the age of eight weeks, and from there on you can maintain them on gamebird grower pellets. Most commercial feeds for ducks and geese are labeled as gamebird starters or feed.

Water- Ducklings can really make a mess with their water. A very important rule is to prevent them from getting into the water. They lack natural oils which is provided from their mothers feathers to repel water. If allowed to bathe or have extended exposure to water, they will quickly become saturated, chilled, or drown. By nature, young waterfowl love to splash and dabble in the water. This habit can create much labor and heartache in rearing them, as it fouls the water, feed, and bedding within the brooder. Water dispenser access should only allow for their bills to enter. Be sure to keep the feed a distance from the water, to prevent either from fouling.

CornerStone Farm
_________________________
CornerStone Farm--A bed and breakfast farm stay

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#56349 - 06/23/06 02:07 PM Re: Mallard duckling found
TWT Offline
Feather

Registered: 10/08/04
Posts: 25
Loc: Virginia
Thanks again. Your so right about the mess they make with the water. Entertaining 'til you have to clean up!

-Todd

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#56350 - 06/25/06 10:52 AM Re: Mallard duckling found
Tracy Wessel Offline
Chick

Registered: 05/27/06
Posts: 14
Loc: Oregon
I miss raising ducklings. I raised up 65 ducklings a couple years ago. My Harlequin flock would follow me around the yard. If you hand raise one, it will be a devoted pet. I eventually had a really broody duck that I could hand off hatchlings too and avoid the whole smelly baby thing.

If you are going to put your duckling outside, make sure it is in a pen or yard that is covered with something (plywood or chicken wire) as crows, owls or cats will be delighted to have a snack of duckling. If your duckling isn't fully feathered, provide a heat lamp (red light, not white) for warmth. He/she should really have one anyway as there isn't any fellow ducklings or duck mom to share body heat with.

It doesn't hurt to have the chickens adjacent to the duckling. Bird company is better than no company, and duck company is better than chicken company...but some company is most desirable, as they are FLOCK animals.

My chickens and ducks have often co-habitated (as ADULTS), though I prefer not to raise them that way, as my chickens will eat moderately and the ducks will gorge and over eat on free choice foods. I have the best luck with letting my ducks free range for food and have a 1x per day feeding of Gamebird crumbles. There are folks who have had broody hens that raised ducks, but you have to have good timing to hand off a baby to a hen and not have her kill it.

I recommend Story's Guide to Raising Ducks for your reading material.

Best of luck. I was given a hand raised Mallard duck once. It took about a month for her to integrate into the duck flock and stop thinking she was human, but she eventually did and became a leader despite her diminutive size. The lady that raised her used her as a therapy duck - took her to the store in a canvas back and she'd poke her head out. Took her to hospices to see people. She was great. One night I didn't get the ducks locked up early enough, and a coyote took her. I was so sad. There were so many ducks to choose from and why her? Anyway, I now live in a coyote proofed place so I'd have more worry with racoons and owls, but have been fortunate for more than a year.
_________________________
Tracy Wessel

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#56351 - 07/02/06 06:40 PM Re: Mallard duckling found
Anonymous
Unregistered


Your duckling will be much happier/healthier with another duckling. You should also add rolled oats and greens to its diet. Your duck may get mites from the chickens, something it wouldn't normally get, but if you can incorporate it without incident, it would be ok with the flock. Ducks don't roost--a 2 ft sq space on the ground/floor is fine.

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