Our teeny weeny smallholding (*read barnyard looking back garden) now has two new little ducklings. A friend had a few duck eggs and promised our girls two if they all hatched ok. Fortunately for us it all went well and now we have two Aylesbury ducks – no idea of their gender yet – called Pingu and Belle.
We started off putting them in a large box lined with plastic, then newspaper, then sawdust. We put our old little chicken drinker and feeder at one end, and at the other we put a hanging lightbulb (for heat), and seeing after a few hours how wet and mucky the floor of the box got, I cut a piece of an old duvet inner and put it near the light so they would have somewhere less mucky to sit.
We just can’t believe how much they have grown in two weeks. It is just unbelievable. They must be four times the size they were two weeks ago. We have given them two little baths, one was actually in the bath, just for a few minutes (last weekend). Today while out we found this great shallow plastic tub that is going to be perfect for them as they get older. We put about an inch of water in the bottom and put them in it and they absolutely loved it. They went made dibbling in the water, cleaning themselves and just generally having fun. It was lovely to watch and we are still amazed that without a mother duck they know when and how to do everything.
We’ve been feeding them firstly chick crumb and water and just today we are starting to add slightly larger chick growers pellets (smaller than our chicken’s pellets). Today we’ve also moved them into a much much bigger box. They really need the room and they have been running around it like they are spring lambs. They are just delightful to watch. And they have been making the tiniest little duck quacks – but they are still mostly peeping.
We’ve also been letting them spend some (supervised) time out on the grass and yesterday evening we took them in with the chickens. They did have an army of body guards (lol) and while one chicken wanted to have a little peck after a few minutes the chickens lost interest. However the body guards keep up intense surveillance to divert any devious chicken attack!!!! We all have our fingers crossed that one day they will live together in harmony.