Caring for ducks & ducklings...

With John Collins

 

Feeding Ducklings

When feeding baby ducklings, it is critical that the correct amount of nutrients, minerals and vitamins are part of their diet to assist in their healthy growth and development.

Recommended food for ducklings according to their age;

  • Up to 10weeks - Riverina Chick Starter (20% Crude Protein) or Complete Duck Mash (18% Crude Protein)
  • 10-18weeks - Riverina Pullet Grower (15% Crude Protein)
  • Over 18weeks - Riverina 17% Laying Mash (17% Crude Protein)

In addition, they can also be fed fruits, vegetables and greens, however ducklings have no teeth, so it is important that they are finely chopped.

Feeding Ducks

Feeding adult ducks is simple as they are able to eat a variety of general grain & bird seed mixes, which is especially handy if you are feeding other poultry such as chooks. Some common mixes are Red Label Coarse Layer Mash, 17% Laying Mash and Coarse Grain Mix. The extra boost of protein found in laying mash will assist ducks with laying. Whole grains such as sorghum, corn, wheat and barley are also easy and contain a great source of nutrients. Cracked corn is another option people like to feed ducks due to easy digestion, however the oils found on the exterior of whole corn are much better for the birds.

Like ducklings, ducks can also be fed any fruits, vegetables and greens. Bread is a common food to feed wild ducks at the park, however it is not a great choice as it has no nutritional value for ducks and is high is calories, low in vitamins D, E & magnesium and can contribute to angle wings in some adults.

Other Important Elements For Ducklings & Ducks

Water is a critical element for all poultry and it is important that they always have a source of clean drinking water. Ducks love to play in water, so be prepared for a bit of mess! One thing to be wary of though is that baby ducklings don’t produce essential waterproofing oils until roughly 4weeks of age, so allowing them to swim too early can result in drowning from fatigue, or death from the chill.

Finally, shelter is another important element for ducks. Make sure that there is enough room for all ducks to fully expand their wings and groom.

Contact us on (07) 4660 0400 or email me at; collie@dalbyruralsupplies.com.au for more information about caring for your pet ducks!