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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2018 11:35 am 
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Dapper Duck
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Joined: Thu Jul 02, 2009 10:17 pm
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A wood-duck (maned goose) casually laid an egg under a tree at our place about a month ago. At the time I was about to set a batch of chicken eggs, so I put this egg in with them in the incubator. Abut 10 days later I looked up their requirements (35-7 degrees, not 40, 28 days, not 21) and thought I had probably cooked it. After the chicken hatch I left this egg in the incubator with no real expectation of it hatching. I was wrong. It hatched yesterday. What should I feed it- I have grower crumble for the chickens. Will that do, or do I have to whizz up some tender grass or something? All advice appreciated.
Cheers
barrycon
P.S. I've asked this in another forum, not realising there was a separate water fowl forum.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:25 pm 
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Proud Rooster
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This from wiki: The Australian wood duck eats grasses, grains, clover and other herbs, and occasionally, insects. It is rarely seen on open water, preferring to forage by dabbling in shallow water, or in grasslands and crops.
I'd say from that info it would probably do ok with the crumbles, and maybe try adding a bit of grass chopped really fine too. How interesting for you to have such a thing happen, keep us posted on how it turns out :-)


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2018 7:36 pm 
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Great Game
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Location: Murwillumbah, NSW
As Aisha said, chick or duck starter and plenty of greens, chopped up grass, english spinach, things like that.

I raised a bunch of pacific black ducks a few years ago and they were pretty easy. viewtopic.php?f=16&t=8014989

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2018 10:28 am 
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Dapper Duck
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Hi and thanks for the advice. I am fine-chopping some clover and mixing with a wet-mix of chick-starter which he is eating..
The little guy has shown the most amazing behaviour. I have the 4 hatched chickens in a fishbox, being heated by an overhead lamp, so I put him in another box with a sides height of about 175mm inside the fishbox so he would get some warmth from the lamp.
He could hear the chickens through the cardboard wall. As he got stronger (day 2) he started jumping like a frog at the wall. A while later I found him in with the chickens who were, at 10 days old about 5 times his size, casually treading on him and pecking at the red spot on his beak. Worried that they would kill him, I put him back in his own area.
An hour later, he was back with the chickens, so I put him back and stopped to watch how on earth he got over.
His technique was to jump up, throw a leg up and hook a claw on the top of the wall. He would then jack-knife himself up. He fell a few times, but at last managed to get over.
About 11 o'clock last night after putting him back 4 times, I gave up and decided to let nature take its course, as I had no way to provide him with warmth any other way.
This morning, it appears he's accepted as one of the chickens, is eating and I hope it all continues like this.
Obviously he is a wild animal with very strong group instincts which have been developed over millennia, which have allowed this particular branch of the goose empire to survive.
Will keep reporting.
Cheers
barrycon


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2018 7:33 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Wood ducklings normally hatch in a nest in a tree hollow far above the ground. Once all hatched they all jump out of the tree to the ground. Then they go as a group to meet their mother who is waiting and calling for them.

So, yeah, strong instincts to stick together and awesome jumping skills.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2018 12:30 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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Attachment:
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The little guy is now fully accepted by the chickens - I think they think he's a very ugly bro', but hey, he's family.
They are all 8 days older, but he is growing very well - at the start he was about 20% of their size, but would now be 40% of their size. They all huddle together under the heat lamp, he's usually snuggled into the middle of the pack.
I hope that as he matures and free-ranges with our chooks, he may be claimed by or link up with his own species in due course.
They all love the chopped clover.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2018 10:30 pm 
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Assist Admin
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Well done! :-)


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2018 11:01 am 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Good to hear that s/he is going well :)

Try to vary the chopped greens....lettuce, spinach, chickweed, bok choy...

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2018 8:46 pm 
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Great Game
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Looks like he's going well Barry.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2018 5:28 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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Just to close this topic off, attached is a photo of this bloke with his adopted siblings. His rate of growth is considerably faster than the chickens, presumably a strategy to keep the juvenile period of vulnerability as short as possible.
I don't handle him at all, and he seems to remain essentially a wild bird.
Cheers and thanks for the interest folks.
barrycon


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 18, 2018 2:24 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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You’ve done a wonderful job. :)

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:54 pm 
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Hatchling
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I believe by law you're required to get a permit to keep native wildlife. Having said that, we did it on the farm as kids a couple times. Never did get them really quiet, ended up always letting them go.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2018 11:05 pm 
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Dapper Duck
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Hi
It's a she, as it turns out.
She now vaguely knows she is not a chicken and some of the time separates herself out from the herd.
There are several wood-duck groups that frequent our place, varying from a group of 4, to 7, to about a dozen. They separately arrive late afternoon.
Yesterday when the 7 group were grazing I caught her and put her about 20 metres away from them. She moved towards them and we thought it was going to happen.
However, around dusk, I heard a loud Qvarrk near our pens, and she'd returned, wanting to be put back in the pen.
Today, I let her out and she immediately took to the air, flying over our neighbour's paddock, then back and down the bottom of our place, a flight of about 500 metres.
Some time later there was a small group of ducks down there also.
Again, on dusk, the loud Qvarrk! and she wanted to be put back in the pen.
We think she might be just building confidence and in due course she will join up. At this stage her colouring is much tighter than the wood-ducks we see, so they are obviously mature.
Am happy to repeat, repeat, repeat, but getting a little tired of having to harvest lettuce, silverbeet, thistle, clover etc. for her and may start letting her out earlier so she can graze on grasses like the rest of them. We have a fox problem so reluctant to simply lock her out.
Will try to post a photo.
Cheers
barrycon


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2018 7:08 am 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Thanks for the update! You’ve been very dedicated to this girl.

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