Help! Ducks! Lots of ducks! How to keep warm...greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) Preparation Forum : One Thread
I bought 25 duck(lings) and 6 goslings. They are coming the 28th. I'm told to put up a heatlamp so they can huddle round it if they get cold. Heatlamp? Got Power? Whaat am I to do? I'm thinking about digging a hole and dumping them in and forgeting all about 'em. How long before they are big enough to get along on their own? I was thinking about keeping them in the shop with the woodstove to keep them warm but the idea of shoveling in wood day and nite has got me bummed! How long do I have to keep them warm? Can I bring them to bed with me? What about the goslings? Will they goose me in the middle of the nite? I was hoping to to keep them as "watch geese", but... too much trouble? I think maybe they would be great to eat all those slugs we get here in the NW. Shit, this y2k thing is nuts! I'm quacking up! love Robert
-- Robertis Paranoid (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 23, 1999
Get the heat lamp, and 5 momma ducks and 1 momma goose.
-- SH (email@example.com), December 23, 1999.
Get a heat lamp but also plan on providing an alternative if needed. Ducklings are messier than chicks because they have to be able to wash food out of their nostrils if it gets in there - so water must me at least beak deep. Best set-up I had was a wire cage with openings big enough for their head to get through (with sharp edges folded/smoothed) and the water trough/dish outside of the cage but against it so they can stick their head through, and drink/wash in it. For heat alternatives one thought I have is a hot brick in a pillow case, hot water bottle, etc., put a heavy towel over the top of the box/cage to help hold the heat in and put in a draft free location in a warm room if possible. Chicks do best if they can stay 100 degrees and ducks are similar, though ducks put on a layer of fat quickly to insulate them - but they need lots of food to do that (chick starter is great - unmedicated preferred, but med. ok too).
Good luck, my email addy is real - ask and I will try to help.
-- Kristi (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 24, 1999.
In a couple of months, your birds should have feathered out enough to keep themselves warm. In the meantime, use a heat lamp to start them out. They are hardier than chicks, so may not need it quite so warm.
I've started ducklings on hardware cloth ( 1/4 to 1/2 inch mesh wire),with newspaper underneath. The paper needs to be changed daily. Put cardboard walls or something around them to keep them draft free. A previous writer was correct in stating they must be able to get their beaks under water to flush their nostrils. Everything I've read indicates ducks should not eat medicated chick food. Please check with your feedstore. I buy prepared food that is also good for game birds and turkeys.
It's going down to zero here (upstate NY) tonight. Although they probably don't need it, I turned on a heat lamp for my ducks out in the barn.
Good luck with your ducks! I find mine very entertaining! You cannot feel stressed watching ducks. They love insects and slugs, and I even found one with a small toad in her mouth!
-- bluetick (email@example.com), December 24, 1999.
I can't believe anyone responded to this stupid post. Can you say TROLL?
-- yeahright (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 28, 1999.