Explore The World of Raising
Raising ducks is simple and has multiple benefits.
Why not consider raising ducks as well?
But as usual, first check the word of the law on raising Ducks
Their cultivation is very simple, they can be raised even in a small city yard. Ducks are extremely social animals so it is best to keep them at least three, and preferably five or six. The best combination is three females or a male with 4 or 5 females. You don’t need a duck to have duck eggs, but then you will never have ducklings, and if you already have experience with raising free-range chickens, then you know very well how delicious homemade eggs are. In addition to being tastier, the eggs of hens that spend the whole day outdoors, picking grass, grains, but also insects, contain more nutrients than the eggs of hens raised in a cage.
So, Duck eggs are highly valued because they have a higher fat content, more good cholesterol and calories than chicken eggs. Their taste is richer and fuller and they contain more vitamins, proteins, omega-3 acids and iron. The advantage of raising ducks is that they lay eggs all year round, even in winter, and they do not need a pond or a special room.
When it comes to keeping ducks, their demands are relatively low. do not need a pond where they can swim. Spraying in the children’s pool will also be satisfied. They like to be outdoors so you don’t need a special facility. They will be satisfied with a smaller room for which the most important thing is to have a secure lock and to be ventilated. The windows in such a room should be protected with bars so that the ducks are safe at night.
It is important that the building is dry and without drafts, but also to protect them in case of rain and wind. Ducks sleep on the floor and they will have enough straw. They do not need boxes to nest, in which they will lay eggs, because they prefer to make their nests on the floor.
Ducks lay eggs after five to six months of age and continue to lay them for several years, and with proper care, a duck can live for ten years. Once they stop laying eggs, they will continue to eat snails and insects, enrich your garden or lawn with nitrogen, but also be fun for the whole family as you watch them splash in the pool or fight in the grass.
In case you are planning to have ducklings as well, you should know how they need heat for the first few weeks until their real feathers grow. For the first two weeks, they should be fed chicken food, and it is recommended to add brewer’s yeast (2% of the total amount of food) for additional niacin, which they need for the development of strong legs and
bones. Adult ducks can also eat chicken food, but also peas, lettuce, leafy vegetables, but also watermelon and cucumbers. For everything else, they will manage on their own outdoors.
Another great advantage is that ducks will clean your garden of snails and larvae. However, be careful because they will trample and eat young plants, but also useful animals in the garden, such as earthworms and frogs. Therefore, when you let them into the garden, monitor their activity.
Duck is a type of domestic poultry, which is raised mostly for its meat, and less for its eggs and feathers. These are lively, resilient and modest animals, which are characterized by rapid growth. Ducks can be fattened in three ways, depending on the breeding conditions, but also on the expected results.
Methods of fattening according to growing conditions, we divide into:
1) Intensive fattening,
2) Semi-intensive fattening,
3) Extensive fattening.
Intensive fattening means fattening ducks in a controlled environment (zoohygienic and veterinary conditions), which means that ducklings are in closed facilities during fattening. This method of fattening gives the greatest safety in fattening and the best production results.
Semi-intensive fattening is the fattening of ducks up to the age of 21 days in controlled conditions in facilities that contain and discharge. The drains allow as many ducks as possible to be fattened on the same indoor area. Fattening is accompanied by a higher risk.
Extensive fattening means fattening ducks up to the age of 21 days in a controlled environment, and then they are taken under canopies. Canopies are most suitable to be placed on saline and sandy soils, and in order to control the movement of ducks and avoid the possibility of pests entering, canopies are fenced. For this way of fattening, it is necessary to provide 2m2 of space per throat. In order to avoid soil pollution, the space for fattening is changed after each shift. When the soil is disinfected, the terrain is left to rest for some time and repopulated. This fattening is followed with the greatest risk and death.
Commercial (intensive) fattening is divided into two phases:
– Early stage rearing phase,
– Duck fattening phase from 21 days to 49 days of age.
– Early stage rearing phase (from 0 to 21 days)
Fattening can take place in different developmental stages, but it is most economical if it starts with one-day-old ducklings. In that case, natural advantages are used. At the beginning of life, the increase is the largest, and nutrients are better used than later. Then, in just fifty days, the slaughter weight is reached, about two kilograms.
It is very important to maintain exceptional hygiene and respect optimal conditions, because they directly affect growth. Before moving in, the room must be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Then, circular fences are introduced, which will retain heat, protect from drafts and allow the ducklings to be close to the feeder, drinker and heat source. Inside the circles spread a clean rug, preferably fine sawdust, five to eight inches thick.
On the first day, the temperature is 34 to 36 degrees, and every next day it decreases by a degree, until it equals the one in the building. After the third week, the ducklings are no longer bothered by low temperatures, but they do not affect fattening. It is optimal 15-18 degrees. Therefore, the strength and number of radiators depends on the climatic conditions, the quality of construction and the insulating power of the building. Electric and gas heaters are most often used. Thermometers must be placed at several points in the facility and in the circle for receiving one-day-old ducklings, in order to monitor the temperature control throughout the facility.
It is very important to control the temperature in the building and on the floor under the heater, but the best indicator of the correctness and quality of heating is the behavior of the ducklings.
• if ducklings are collected under the heater itself – the temperature is too low;
• if the ducklings are distributed along the edge of the circle and pant – then the temperature is too high;
• if the ducklings gather under one side of the circle – it should be checked that there is no draft in the building by chance.
The building must be lit all the time, because in that way the growth is accelerated. It is best not to turn off the bulbs for the first three days, and after that the lighting lasts for 23 hours a day.
The one-hour shutdown is applied only as a precaution, so that the ducklings get used to the darkness. Otherwise, an accidental power outage could cause panic and death. The intensity of the light must not be above five watts per square meter.
The optimal population density when moving in is 0.1 square meter per duck. After that, the diameter of the fence is gradually increased, and on the tenth day, it is removed from the box.
In the first weeks, the ducklings gain as much as 40 grams a day, so it is best to feed them with a starter in the form of pellets. In that period, only two kilograms of nutrients are needed for a kilogram of growth, and later four or five, or even more. By the twentieth day, mixtures with 19 percent of digestible proteins are recommended, while later the share is reduced to 16 percent.
In the absence of pelleted food, wholesome flour or coarse mixtures can be used. They are pre-soaked, because in that way the utilization of the meal increases. This nutrient should contain at least two or three types of cereals, oil cake, meat and bone meal and vitamin-mineral premix. Meat and bone meal can be replaced with lean cheese, so that instead of a gram of flour, two grams of cheese are added.
From the third day, meals are enriched with fish oil and chopped green foods such as nettles, cabbage, alfalfa and clover. The share of greens gradually increases, so at the end of the fourth week, each duck gets 100 grams a day. Along with chopped greens, whole leaves are also given. After the tenth day, boiled potatoes, some sand and chopped charcoal enter the meals.
All the time, this food is given in unlimited quantities, to be able to take it at will.. Of course, care is taken to ensure that there is always enough fresh water in the drinkers.
Since ducklings are very lively and resistant, there are very few deaths in their breeding in optimal conditions. The total duck death up to 21 days must not exceed 2%. If the ducklings die, the corpses should be taken out of the facility immediately and safely removed. In the event that a large number of deaths occur, its cause must be investigated.
In order to be able to monitor the fattening of ducklings, it is necessary to keep regular records of food consumption, water, mats and mortality, on a daily basis. To avoid any possibility of infection, the following must be taken into account:
• regular maintenance of the disinfection barrier;
• for the first two days of age, give ampivet with vitamins in drinking water, according to the instructions;
• prevent birds and rodents from entering the facility;
• regularly control the quality of water and ventilation;
• control food quality;
• avoid any entry of foreigners into the facility.
Ducks are not only kept for quality meat, but are also used for the production of quality hams, sausages, salami and other specialties, which makes an adequate profit.
Also, chack this site about Food Preservation Methods and Guidance