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Everyone
Sep 6, 2019
I STAND WITH THE MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT

Confession, I don't own any ducks/geese/etc. but I am suffering a weird obsession/desire to get some. So I've been trolling around the internet reading a bunch of stuff, watching cute videos etc and I thought I'd share some of that. I'm also extending an invitation to any/all who actually do own ducks/geese/etc to post their lessons/experiences, including/especially your mistakes so that new/potential owners/caretakers (and their little tweetie-sweeties) can benefit. There seems to be a lot of different opinions on the various Do's so I'll start out with some Don'ts. First up, though:



This is a duckling. No, that hand probably isn't freakishly large. Ducklings really are (or can be) that small. Look at that thing for a second. Feel free to go "Awww!" Notice that little body. Look at that tiny little head on that little body. Now consider the itty-bitty tiny little brain that fits inside that tiny little head on that little body. Ducklings are stupid. So are human babies. Unlike human babies, ducklings are highly mobile. They're walking/running/jumping from stupidly high places within a day or just hours of being hatched.

The upshot of this is that you, as the owner/caretaker will really have to be the brains in your relationship with your duckling(s). Because while they're stupid in every other respect, ducklings/goslings/etc seem to have a focused genius for getting into lethal trouble. That tiny bit of of sharp metal you tracked in on your shoes? They'll eat it. And die. They love to swim and play in water. And they will. Until they get tired and water-logged and drown. And die. Or get cold. And die. If you put them on something high up and they see something down below which looks "interesting" they'll jump off. And hurt themselves. Or die. So, Don't #1

Don't Leave Your Duckling Unsupervised. You can let a cat or dog, even a puppy or kitten, pretty much roam around your home fairly safely. You can't do that with a duckling. If they're out of a brooder or enclosed container, you have to pay attention to them. For one thing, once they've imprinted on you, they well try to follow you everywhere. And they'll stay really, really close to you as they do this. So if you're not watching, you could easily stomp your duckling into a fuzzy pizza.

This is even more important if you have other pets in your home. Ducklings are basically the Lay's Potato Chips of the animal world - a handy snack food. Mom ducks hatch double-digits of them because of 10+ maybe one or two will make it all the way to flight/independence in two-three months. Cats will eat ducklings. So will dogs. And even if they don't, they'll easily "play" them to death.

Don't Sleep With Your Duckling Nope, not a euphemism for sex, though hopefully I don't have to add "Don't have sex with your duckling." That should be a given. No, I'm talking about actual sleep in a bed. Ducklings imprinted on you will want to be near you like they would their mom. They'll burrow and snuggle as much as possible. Unfortunately, you're not a duck mom. Duck moms can literally sleep with one eye open. They can turn off half their brains and maintain awareness with the other half. So a duck mom can feel when she's potentially crushing/suffocating her babies and adjust accordingly. You can't. You're a human. You unconsciously move, roll, etc. during the night. Depending on the breed, a duckling might weigh as little as an once when hatched. So if you're a 125# pound woman with a 4 oz duckling, you're still 500 times its body weight and can easily crush or suffocate it during the night

Don't Torture a Duckling This has two parts. The first is physical. Ducklings are stupid and needy and they'll poo poo everywhere. Let them sleep in your hat and they'll poo poo in it. Let them play in your shoe and they'll poo poo in it. If you want to do the "Duckling in a cup" photo, wash that cup before your drink out of it, because there will likely be duckling poo poo in it. And when they run after you, you'll hear the adorable pitter-patter of those webbed feet. And probably see a trail of poo poo behind them. Ducks don't have sphincters. They can't "hold it until later." The poop comes when it comes. At night they'll tweet and probably wake you if they're nearby. So they can be irritating, even infuriating. And you will be sorely tempted to smack them or spank them. Or just give them a little "Bad Duckie!" flick of your finger. DON'T. Remember the 500x weight bit from the last Don't? A flick of your finger for them is like getting hit by a car for you. They're delicate. You can kill or cripple them easily. Plus, look back to the top of this post. See that cute l'il duck baby? What kind of evil loving rear end in a top hat would strike that? Not one that you want to be, right? So, best think prevention instead of punishment.

Part two: Don't psychologically torture a duckling. Watch a few videos or just watch some ducks. They're flock animals. Social animals. A Mommy duck might have 10-12 or more little fuzzballs following her around. Ducks are most comfortable in large groups. An isolated duck/duckling is a highly vulnerable duck/duckling. And stupid as they are, they're aware of that. Leaving them isolated is torture for them. It might not kill them, but they'll live miserable lives. If you're getting ducklings, get at least two, though it's apparently better if you get four or possibly more. And if your living arrangements won't let you get more than maybe one, you should probably shift your living arrangements before getting any ducklings.

Still, sometimes you can't really control these things. Maybe you've found a single duckling that's lost or injured or under threat from predators, including other humans (especially humans in cars). So you found it and it's going to stay the night before you can get it to a wildlife rehabilitation center. I'm phrasing that last for folks in the US. Wild ducks are federally protected. All of them. Snatching a cute little baby ducky from the park is a Federal Crime which can put your rear end in prison. And you also cannot keep a wild animal for more than 24 hours before turning it in to proper authorities, including/especially a certified wildlife rehabilitator (if you're reading this post, you're almost certainly on the internet so you should be able to use Google to find the closest rehabilitator near your town/state). And generally, wildlife rehabilitators don't make house calls. So you'll need to take your duckling guest to them. If you can't do that within the time limit, then as much as it sucks, you're probably better off leaving the duckling where it is. They're adorable, but they're not pay-a-big-fine, go-to-jail, lose your job/house/car adorable.

So regarding your new overnight guest, it's probably alone, which as previously mentioned sucks for ducks. After making sure it has adequate heat and possibly food and water that won't drown it or give it hypothermia and that's it's also protected from pets/predators (and won't jump out and roam your house), you need to help it emotionally. But you've probably got stuff to do in your own life and probably can't stay up all night to comfort a duckling. One of the things I've read you can do is put a stuffed duck/duckling toy/blanket in with it. Something it can cuddle with and get under. Also, put a hand mirror in with it (attached to the wall of its container so it won't fall on the duckling). Just being able to see "another" duckling will be a real comfort to the little one.

Don't Be An Irresponsible Fuckhead. Ducks aren't goldfish. In captivity they can live close to 20 years. Depending on your age/health/etc. your new baby duckling could outlive you. Also, ducklings grow quickly. You've got maybe six to eight weeks before your cute widdle baby duckie becomes... a duck. Which will potentially be in your life for the next 15+ years. So if you want to get ducklings, be prepared to make that commitment. And if you're not willing to make that commitment, don't get ducklings. Above all, don't be one of those loving assholes who gets a duckling, gets tired of it when it's no longer cute and just abandons it at a park. Or does that stupid poo poo of "Oh, I'll put the duckie with another duck mommy." Ducks are territorial. Duck mothers are protective of their babies. Emphasis their babies. You put your duckling near another duck mom and her ducklings and she'll kill it. Other ducks will also kill it. Or predators will eat it. Or it'll just starve to death. And even if the duck survives, you are potentially introducing or adding to an invasive species, so even if the duck you abandoned survives, you're potentially causing death and misery for a bunch of other ducks/animals.

As an example, in Florida, if you own a mallard duck, you are required to keep it caged or otherwise contained on your property and away from other native waterfowl. You are forbidden to release it into the wild on penalty of fines and prison time. Mallard ducks are considered an invasive species in Florida. They compete for food and habitats with native mottled ducks. They also heavily crossbreed with them with the result that there are fewer and fewer "purebreed" mottled ducks every year. So, just like being any other kind of "parent" if you keep ducklings/ducks you have a responsibility to them (and to the rest of the world) to raise them right.

Everyone fucked around with this message at 10:07 on Nov 20, 2019

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Fluffy Bunnies
Jan 9, 2009

We'll roll on with our heads held high.
Our conscience in the gutter,
Our dreams up in the sky.




Shove it under heat until it gets feathers, put a feeder and a waterer in the pen, keep the pen clean and keep your bird's wings trimmed. If it's a mallard breed, make sure it has a clean pool to swim in. Muscovies appreciate it but don't need it.

There. That's ducks.

Everyone
Sep 6, 2019
I STAND WITH THE MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT

Fluffy Bunnies posted:

Shove it under heat until it gets feathers, put a feeder and a waterer in the pen, keep the pen clean and keep your bird's wings trimmed. If it's a mallard breed, make sure it has a clean pool to swim in. Muscovies appreciate it but don't need it.

There. That's ducks.

Keep 'em fed, clothed and clean. Get 'em to study at school and behave in public 'til they're 18. College is useful but not necessary.

There. That's human children.

And while what you said and what I just said are true to an extent, they do kind of leave out some details.

Fluffy Bunnies
Jan 9, 2009

We'll roll on with our heads held high.
Our conscience in the gutter,
Our dreams up in the sky.




Everyone posted:

Keep 'em fed, clothed and clean. Get 'em to study at school and behave in public 'til they're 18. College is useful but not necessary.

There. That's human children.

And while what you said and what I just said are true to an extent, they do kind of leave out some details.

I've raised just at 20,000 ducks. They're ducks. Not kids.

Everyone
Sep 6, 2019
I STAND WITH THE MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT

Fluffy Bunnies posted:

I've raised just at 20,000 ducks. They're ducks. Not kids.

Sure, and that's great. You're an expert. At this point you've got raising ducks to the point where it's pretty much muscle memory for you.

That's not true for the folks I envision checking out this thread for information. They'll be people who just got a duckling/gosling/etc. Maybe from a farm. Maybe they just found an orphaned one, took it home and are at the "Now WTF do I do?" stage. Looking at your post again:

Fluffy Bunnies posted:

Shove it under heat until it gets feathers, put a feeder and a waterer in the pen, keep the pen clean and keep your bird's wings trimmed. If it's a mallard breed, make sure it has a clean pool to swim in. Muscovies appreciate it but don't need it.

There. That's ducks.

I already know some of thus, but for example:

Shove it under heat? What kind of heat?

Put a feeder and a waterer in the pen? What kind of feed do I use? How much water? What kind of pen?

Wings Trimmed? How do I trim wings?

How do we keep a pool clean? What kind of pool?

And to you those questions are basic to the point of stupidity. But that's who this thread is for, stupid people wanting to be less stupid about something.

Fluffy Bunnies
Jan 9, 2009

We'll roll on with our heads held high.
Our conscience in the gutter,
Our dreams up in the sky.




We have a poultry thread though and is there some giant duck owning movement in SA that I'm unaware of or what

Everyone
Sep 6, 2019
I STAND WITH THE MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT

Fluffy Bunnies posted:

We have a poultry thread though and is there some giant duck owning movement in SA that I'm unaware of or what

In a forum that has multiple threads devoted to various cats and dog, I think there's room for one specifically about ducks and/or geese - especially baby ones. If I'm wrong a moderator will delete the thread and I might even eat some kind of probation/ban, but I don't think I'm wrong. I guess we'll see.

I plan to continue posting stuff here and welcoming other people to post stuff here. You're completely free to disapprove of that.

Fluffy Bunnies
Jan 9, 2009

We'll roll on with our heads held high.
Our conscience in the gutter,
Our dreams up in the sky.




So hey if anyone wants actual info about poultry just come ask us in the poultry thread and not this guy who's done a little bit of research. There's something like 300+ years of collective experience over in the chicken/poultry thread. Thanks. https://forums.somethingawful.com/s...hreadid=3417601

Everyone
Sep 6, 2019
I STAND WITH THE MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT

Fluffy Bunnies posted:

So hey if anyone wants actual info about poultry just come ask us in the poultry thread and not this guy who's done a little bit of research. There's something like 300+ years of collective experience over in the chicken/poultry thread. Thanks. https://forums.somethingawful.com/s...hreadid=3417601

And if some folks from that thread want to, they can post some of their 3 centuries+ of experience here so people don't have to wade through 11,000+ posts to get the info they need. Either way.

Everyone
Sep 6, 2019
I STAND WITH THE MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT

So, here's a couple of videos:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8H1Akg1Rono

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Es5YiRAM3nI

Let's first appreciate that yes, ducklings running around on a bed are adorable. *Le Sigh*

Now consider that this woman is kind of the poster child for duckling don'ts.

Like, Don't steal a duckling. In the first video, she flat-out states that she stole the baby from its mother and siblings. It wasn't injured. It wasn't abandoned. It wasn't being attacked or threatened. It was just really cute and visible to her, so she grabbed it. And violated federal law in doing so. If you find a duckling in the wild, you have to get it to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator within 24 hours. And you're only supposed to do that if the ducking is injured, abandoned or otherwise in imminent danger.

And in the same video, she seems... less than educated about ducklings and ducks in general. I understand the instinct but she keeps grabbing the duckling when it gets near the edge of the bed. There's plenty of videos with ducklings jumping from higher places onto harder surfaces and being fine.

And in the second video, she decided to get a companion for "Duckie." So she went back to the same mother and stole another duckling. She feeding the ducklings something that looks dry, maybe crackers. And there's no water. And ducks don't have saliva. So that's a recipe for these little things to choke to death.

Also in the second video there's a dog trying to jump on the bed. And the dog's owner is clearly far more interested in her new duckling toys than in the dog. So, yeah, that won't build resentment in the dog and cause it to kill/mutilate the "competition" the first chance it gets.

Those are the only two vids she has of the ducklings. Probably because they're dead now, either from owner stupidity or because they grew enough to stop being cute so she dumped the now domesticate creatures back into the wild to starve or get eaten.

Chaosfeather
Nov 4, 2008



Hey Everyone! As a bird crazy I won't ever own a duckling nor a Gosling but I love reading about them and seeing the birds.

Please ignore Fluffy Bunnies, as the rest of us do. They're just an rear end in a top hat troll who frequents P.I. I mean, if you have any questions you can look at their rap sheet, but it's really easy to just hit ignore.

The only pictures I have are of wild ducks, and I like to think most people wouldn't dream of trying to simply catch one and 'tame' it but you never know.

You're welcome to the chicken thread but it's definitely for chickens and quails and not really for waterfowl.

Everyone
Sep 6, 2019
I STAND WITH THE MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT

Chaosfeather posted:

Hey Everyone! As a bird crazy I won't ever own a duckling nor a Gosling but I love reading about them and seeing the birds.

Please ignore Fluffy Bunnies, as the rest of us do. They're just an rear end in a top hat troll who frequents P.I. I mean, if you have any questions you can look at their rap sheet, but it's really easy to just hit ignore.

The only pictures I have are of wild ducks, and I like to think most people wouldn't dream of trying to simply catch one and 'tame' it but you never know.

You're welcome to the chicken thread but it's definitely for chickens and quails and not really for waterfowl.

I've actually been spending a good bit of time at https://www.backyardchickens.com/ though mostly in the Ducks forum. There's a Quail section there too. Otherwise it is very, very strong with the chickens.

sudonim
Oct 6, 2005


Soiled Meat

Clicked thread for the ducks, stayed for the forums drama.

Thanks for pointing out that it's a crime to just pick up a dick in the wild. It's surprising such a thing can actually hsppen but there's some dumbasses out there.

nielsm
Jun 1, 2009




Fallen Rib

Hi. Do you have a very large backyard, with a reasonably large pond in it? Are you planning to leave your home for longer than one day at a time, at any point in the next 10 years?

Unless your answers are Yes and No respectively, then you should probably not get a duck.

In fact, you should probably not get one duck anyway. It's either several ducks or no ducks.

Fluffy Bunnies
Jan 9, 2009

We'll roll on with our heads held high.
Our conscience in the gutter,
Our dreams up in the sky.




nielsm posted:

Hi. Do you have a very large backyard, with a reasonably large pond in it? Are you planning to leave your home for longer than one day at a time, at any point in the next 10 years?

Unless your answers are Yes and No respectively, then you should probably not get a duck.

In fact, you should probably not get one duck anyway. It's either several ducks or no ducks.

It's easy to leave them for a weekend. You just fill up the feeder and go.

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Alien Sex Manual
Dec 14, 2010

is not a sandwich



We purchased 10 Golden Cascade ducklings from a reputable breeder and have had them for a little over 3 weeks now. I absolutely adore them. Their adult feathers are starting to come in and they look absolutely unsightly, but god they are the cutest things in the world. I have never enjoyed a cat or dog as much as I have these shitmonsters!!

That said they are a LOT of work and really, really gross because of that whole “no sphincter” thing. I can’t wait until they’re big enough to leave the brooder and move into the house and run so they can stink up the yard instead of my deck.

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