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Keeping Ducks As Pets
Before you acquire the ducklings, make sure that you are well-equipped to do the task of raising and keeping the ducks by considering the following factors:
Adequate Space – Ducks are sociable animals, it is advisable to keep at least three ducks to foster physical and mental growth. You will need at least a minimum space of 10 ft. per mature duck. You should also consider your yard space, since they need to roam around in the open, to play, scavenge for grass and weeds and to breathe fresh air. If you have a small pond, it will be an added fun since they are well-equipped to swim through it.
Safety – you should make sure that your pet ducks will be free from physical dangers and predators. The shelter should be away from intense heat, rainfall, snow, and predators such as foxes, stray dogs, cats, owls, eagles, hawks and other wild animals. Confining them in a safe place at night is necessary
Resources – When you want to raise ducks as a pet, you need to devote money and time, especially if they are still ducklings and still needs some nurturing. You should provide them with food, adequate space for feeding and drinking, medicines when they are sick, and vaccines.
In housing your pet ducks, you should keep them inside for the first three to four weeks. If the weather is warm, they can then move in the open when they are two to three weeks old.
Providing your ducks with an adequate source of water can help them in their proper well-being.
Ducklings can be brooded without a mother hen as long as you provide proper incubation. A light bulb placed in a corner of the pen works best. Place the lamp in a certain area of the pen so the ducklings can escape the heat if the pen gets too warm. If you find the ducklings huddled under the lamp, it means that they feel cold. If they are crowded away from the lamp, the pen is too warm.
A used play pen is enough for housing the ducks. You might need to place the sides with screenings and wires to keep them from escaping. You can also use a plastic kiddie pool. Line it with absorbent litter such as wood shavings or saw dust and suspend a heat lamp over a corner. You can also use a dog or cat litter scoop to pick up their wastes every day.
Make sure that the floor is not wet to avoid any slipping. They should always have some kind of shelter that will keep them safe from the sun, rainfall, snow or hale if kept outside the home. A cheap lean-to can be built by placing a piece of plywood up on two wood blocks or logs.
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