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Hatching Duck Eggs (part 5)

September 2, 2008 | By Anonymous

Caring for Your Ducklings After They Hatch

Keep them warm and to feed them as follows...

Small ducks need warmth (they can't supply it themselves). You need to buy or make a "brooder" for their warmth and protection.

To make one yourself, get a big box and hang a light bulb in there that is close enough to give off some heat but not so close that the little guy can get burnt. Don't let him touch it. The box should be big enough so that the little guy can move closer to the heat when he is warm and move away from the heat when he is too hot. He'll find his own comfort level. Always be careful about placing lights and electrical wires safe and secure to prevent fires.

The best "bedding" is an old bath towel. Don't use hay or straw. It just sticks to them and is harder to clean. Don't use newspaper either as they tend to be unable to get their footing and sometimes this causes "splayed legs" (Good footing when they are small helps their legs to develop more properly).

Since ducklings hatched in captivity are separated from their natural mom, they should not be placed in water for too long at all and especially without constant supervision. Instinctually they love playing in the water, but since their oil glands are not able to produce enough oil to keep them afloat they'll drown easily. In nature baby ducklings get their water resistant oils from their moms until they are five or six weeks old and their own oil glands begin to function. The bottom line is that baby ducks love to swim but without mom around are vulnerable to drowning and chills. They don't need to swim to survive at all.


SOURCE: www.duckeggs.com/hatching-eggs.html
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