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homemade duck starter feed

 
Marie Ash
Posts: 3
Location: SW Missouri Ozarks
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I'll be getting 6 Ancona ducklings in a couple of weeks and I am looking for recipes (hopefully fairly simple) that people have used to start their ducklings. Our family avoids all corn and soy, so I'd like to avoid that in their feed as well. I've read through a couple of other similar topics on here, but didn't really find this question answered. Surely there is somebody out there raising ducklings on a purely homemade diet! Any help will be greatly appreciated!
 
Judith Browning
Posts: 5555
Location: Arkansas Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep loam/clay with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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Welcome to permies Marie.... I don't know the answer but someone here will and this will bump up your post.
 
Marie Ash
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Location: SW Missouri Ozarks
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Thanks so much, Judith!
 
Timothy Markus
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Location: Ontario, Canada
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You can get corn and soy free feed, I think from a company called H&H in Texas. I think they use peanut for the protein portion of the feed. If you call around you may be able to find something else local.

If you're just starting out, you may be better off with a commercial feed that fits your criteria. Feed formulations aren't rocket science, but I think you should really know what you're doing before you start formulating your own feed. If that's what you want or have to do, you can also check out backyardchickens.com. There are probably several threads about feed formulation there.

Good luck.
 
Marie Ash
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Location: SW Missouri Ozarks
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Thank you for the advice, Timothy.

I've kept up my search, and from what I have read, it seems that most people start ducks on a commercial chick starter and add brewer's yeast to make sure there is enough niacin. The ratio is about 3 pounds yeast to 25 pounds feed or 2-3 cups yeast per 10 pounds of feed. There are quite a few homemade chick starter recipes to be found, so, what I will most likely end up doing is going with one of those recipes or something similar, and adding the brewer's yeast. I will post my recipe and my results for anyone else who might be interested!
 
R Scott
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Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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For ducks, I buy one bag of organic starter and that is it. After they are done with that they are pretty self sufficient on pasture in tractors. I will supplement with sprouted grain or sunflower seeds if the pasture is thin. It wasn't worth my time to make starter for one bag.
 
Miranda Converse
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Marie Ash wrote:Thank you for the advice, Timothy.

I've kept up my search, and from what I have read, it seems that most people start ducks on a commercial chick starter and add brewer's yeast to make sure there is enough niacin. The ratio is about 3 pounds yeast to 25 pounds feed or 2-3 cups yeast per 10 pounds of feed. There are quite a few homemade chick starter recipes to be found, so, what I will most likely end up doing is going with one of those recipes or something similar, and adding the brewer's yeast. I will post my recipe and my results for anyone else who might be interested!


Just be careful with the commercial chick starter and make certain that it is not medicated. Ducklings eat waaay more than chicks and will basically overdose themselves on medicated feed. I usually go with Gamebird starter which is not medicated (at least I've never seen it medicated). I actually give this to my chicks as well because it's so hard to find unmedicated chick feed around here and I don't believe in medicating a healthy animal.

The brewer's yeast is a good idea. I've had a handful of ducklings with wry-neck and/or leg problems and after giving them B-complex vitamins (has niacin) and Vitamin E they always bounce right back.
 
Miranda Converse
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Oh, and look into duckweed as a homemade feed. Supposedly super easy to grow and has a high protein content...worth looking into!
 
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