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clucky ducks..

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  • clucky ducks..

    Hi again - 3 questions -

    1: I have a male and female duck as part of my chook flock - and they have both gone clucky - sitting on any eggs that the female duck or any chooks lay.. How do I discourage this - they are very aggressive, and I don't want to hurt them - the drake got his beak caught in the rake when I tried to move him!! My chooks are sitting on top of the ducks to lay their eggs, and the ducks are then rolling the egg into their nest!!!

    2:Is it normal for the drake to sit on eggs too??? Or is he a new age duck??

    3: some of the eggs they have been sitting on for a week or two (duck eggs) have gone very white...does this mean they may hatch ?? Or are they just cooking under the heat of duck's bums???

  • #2

    1. Assuming you have the ducks sexed correctly, sometimes male ducks will sit [but I havent seen it with muscovies].

    2. You desperately need more nests especially put some off the ground so the ducks cant bother the chooks.

    3. Yes, in some duck species the eggs go quite white and the shells appear to thin during the brooding but it could mean anything including infertility. Sure you have a duck and a drake?

    Ducks can and do stress the hell outta chooks if each species particular needs are not met. This is very apparent in respect to 3 vital issues. Food - ducks are guzzlers and can eat so much and so fast that it will leave the chooks hungry. Water - ducks foul the water something chronic facilitating the transmission of internal parasites etc. So make sure the chooks have clean water they can access. Lastly, nesting sites as mentioned before.




    • #3
      DEFINITELY try and stop the chooks from laying in the ducks' nest. Can you fence the chooks off from the ducks? Or fence the ducks in?

      When a bird is broody, they are hotter and heat keeps them broody. A neighbour of mine used to cool broody hens off by caging them in a wire cage, off the ground. With nothing to insulate them underneath they eventually cool off and give up the brood. He would also sometimes wet the hen to speed up the process. Not sure how you would do it with ducks.

      Also, something we discovered with nesting water birds - if you don't give the birds access to a pond on a daily basis, you can have trouble hatching the eggs. The shells need to be damp in order to be soft enough for the chick to get out. You can sprinkle water on the eggs in the week before they're due to hatch - do it when the hen is off the nest. But in your case, sounds like both parents are guarding the nest, not sure how you would do this.

      With access to water, the ducks go for their swim and paddle before going back to the nest, and the wet feathers will do the job. Not good for the chook eggs that may have in the nest, though.
      Trying to teach my young son about growing your own food (and cooking it). Scraps go to chooks, whose compost feeds the garden.


      • #4
        Ducks lay a large number of eggs before bedding down to hatch them. They will gather any egg in sight and guard them viciously!
        Somehow at the appointed time the process begins so that all will hatch in at approx the same time. They will rarely leave the nest during this period. As mentioned earlier by Floot, the sex of your ducks is in question because a drake will seldom demonstrate any interest in the brooding process. They only seem interested in food, drink and sex.
        However, two ducks will quarrel & move eggs back and forth, from nest to nest. I would try to arrange a private nesting area for the dominant duck away from those pesky hens and wait for what will seem an impossible length of time for them to hatch. Sexing ducks by sight is not easy but if you grab a duck she will usually say 'Quack, Quack' but when you grag a drake he says somthing else, more like 'Yammer,Yammer'!


        • #5
          Of my 2 ducks - one is bigger and all brown, and one is smaller and has green/purplish wing feathers...they often mate, with the larger brown one on the bottom....I always assumed they were boy/girl??? They both are sitting on eggs, I don't want ducklings, so I have managed to take away all the eggs, but as soon as a chook lays - they sit on it...I will keep taking away the eggs daily. Will this be enough to stop broodiness???
          Thanks for all the advice..


          • #6
            Removing the eggs daily is a good idea. Eventually they will give up. If you do decide to let one set then remember to mark the eggs you want hatched with a pencil.

            It is peak time for bird nesting and this behaviour may keep up for ages.

            Did you put more nest boxes in? Sometimes by relocating the nest boxes and perches etc it is enough to get fowl to stop going broody while they get used to their 'new' surrounds.