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HELP! New baby ducks by surprise!

 
Shawn Harper
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Location: Portlandia, Oregon
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So I found 3 abandoned baby mallards in the road. We looked for almost an hour for their mother nearby, but couldn't find her. Rather than leave them to a death by car or cat, we took them home. They are super small and I am unsure of all the details of what to do... I was planning on getting my first baby ducks in 2-3 years. I got all the supplies and now am wondering if softening the starter mix might be a good idea. I tried feeding it as is and they didn't eat it just spat it out. advise?
 
hans muster
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give them water, otherwise they can choke on food
 
Nicole Alderman
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duck forest garden hugelkultur
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Like Hans said, make sure they have access to water. You can also soften their feed with water. Some feeds can even be sprouted or fermented (http://www.scratchandpeck.com/wp-content/uploads/Fermenting-Feed_7-27-2015.pdf), which helps add niacin and other nutrients. (If you're feeding a chicken feed, make sure to add niacin or brewer's yeast to their feed, as chicken feed has less niacin than ducks need.)

It could also be that the ducks are not used to eating feed. You can try chopping up grass and dandelions and other greens to their feed, as that might look more like food for them, and it will add more nutrients into their diet. If you add in the greens, though, make sure to supply grit if you're not already, to help them digest it (if you can't find grit, scoop up some sandy/silty dirt and put it in a bowl--I did that for my ducks and it worked fine).

I hope that helps! It can be so overwhelming when you first get ducks, especially if you weren't planning on having any for a few years!
 
Shawn Harper
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Location: Portlandia, Oregon
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Thanks for the replies. Yes they definitely have water. I added some greens chopped up to their food they seem to like that.
 
Shawn Harper
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Location: Portlandia, Oregon
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Morning check in:

The babies are doing good, got them a mix of greens and starter and they seem to prefer that. They didn't sleep till they had a stuft animal, then they quieted down nicely till 6am... but I included pictures! So we are raising them here till they get bigger where we will take them to southern oregon to my roommates moms animal rescue. She has been giving us advice, and we are going to be teaching them foraging so hopefully they can be released when they are older.
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