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How much food to feed Pekins?

Discussion in 'Poultry Health and Nutrition' started by Kinksfan, May 17, 2010.

  1. Kinksfan

    Kinksfan PetForums Newbie

    May 14, 2010
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    Hello, I've just joined Pet Forums and would like to know how much pelleted food would we feed our 4 Pekin Ducks. They're adults and were fine with the amounts we were feeding in the past but so far this year, we're flummoxed.

    We feel so stupid because we've had these girls for almost 4 yrs. now! What's strange is they've started yapping for food quite a lot whereas they didn't in the past. Nothing has changed in their living arrangements, etc.

    They have a HUGE fenced yard to themselves within our property in the country so they have plenty of access all day long to bugs, roots, etc. We feed them pelleted food as well overnight in their shed.

    I've never found anything to tell just exactly what amount to feed each duck, probably about 8 lbs. each. They're pets.

    Thank you:)
  2. Taseera

    Taseera PetForums Newbie

    Aug 13, 2010
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    Basically, your ducks are old enough for a maintenance feed for ducks or chickens that is available at your local farmer's supply store, like Farmer's Service or Tractor Supply, or by mail order. Duck or chicken feed usually comes in 50# bags. Some farmer's service stores will also sell it by the pound if you have just a few birds. Duck (waterfowl) or game bird food is preferable to chicken, but chicken food will do.
    Special waterfowl food is available from Purina in some localities, and a very specialized brand called Mazuri. I have ordered Mazuri from their website mazuri.com, but find it to be too expensive for our budget.
    Be sure that the food you buy is non-medicated (food especially for ducks is non-med, but check your chicken food label or ask a salesperson) and you want it to be pelleted, not crumble. Crumble will tend to make older ducks choke and they tend to waste it all over the ground.
    If you are concerned about egg production, you can buy a layer/breeder formula especially made for laying hens, and it's okay for the drakes to eat it as well.
    If your ducks are foraging in your yard, they will need one feeding a day. If they do not have access to a large area to roam and pick through the grass and weeds, they will need two feedings, enough to keep them eating for 10 minutes at a time. You can feed them free choice (constant supply) but if they are not allowed to roam, allowing them to eat free choice will cause them to gain too much weight which can lead to health problems.
    Also, if they are not free-roaming, you need to provide grit, usually labeled "chick grit" free choice. Grit looks like tiny pebbles and aid in the digestion of chickens and ducks who aren't foragers.
    If you live where it gets very cold in the winter, supplementing their feed during the coldest months with some corn several days out of the week helps them to build up body fat for warmth.
    Ducks LOVE fresh lettuce and other fresh veggie and fruit scraps and it is great for their digestion- don't feed moldy or wilted veggies though. Bread and other "people food" is NOT good for ducks and can cause sickness and death.
    Enjoy your ducks!!
  3. zoejames

    zoejames PetForums Junior

    Oct 1, 2010
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    For advice regarding feeding ducks try looking here:
    Poultry Feeding Guide Original

    The Smallholder layers pellets are excellent quality and they have a team you can call who will give you veterinary advice on nutrition.

    Like the previous post said, you will need to feed your ducks a pelleted ration during the day even if they are ranging. Once or twice a day. Exact amounts can be found on the food product you use.

    Also if they seem to be wanting more than usual it's worth worming them with Flubenvet (mixed in their food directions on the side of the tub). Ducks will not eat much overnight, and will probably do better fed during the day.

    Another thing to consider is are they actually quacking for food? This time of year is pairing season and if they don't have a male in the group they may be calling for a mate. Can you describe the kind of noise they are making? i.e. how many quacks, are they loud or quiet, what space in between the quacks. It's very easy to tell why they are quacking from the kind of quack it is (sorry I am a duck behaviour geek!).

    Good luck!

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