Our Future Bug Eaters - The Ducklings Have Arrived

Last night I received an email from Purely Poultry, an online bird shop.  The email said, your ducks have shipped. This caught me by surprise. I didn't expect them to come until January, if we were lucky. 

The news of the pending arrival of our very first birds sent me scrambling to watch as many YouTube video about raising ducks as I could possibly cram into my head in one night.  What I found out was this.  You raise baby ducks just like you raise baby chickens.  Keep them warm with a light, give them access to water, food and away from drafts.  This was good news because I had already purchased almost everything I needed to raise baby Chickens, which are due to arrive mid December.

At 6 a.m. our local Healdsburg Post office called to let us know our Chickens have arrived and we should pick them up soon, because they have no way to keep them alive.  Pretty grim message.  So, I jumped in the truck, headed to Ace (to grab some food and bedding) and then on to the Post Office. 

The so called Chickens were really the Ducks of course.  Tucked away in a small white box.  You could hear them chirping inside but you couldn't really see them.  I quickly drove them over to my wood shop about a block away and setup their new temporary home.  A wood walled pen with two heat lamps, water, food options and some grit.  They seem to feel right at home.

This first batch of ducks, 11 of them in all, are 1 day old Cayuga Ducklings and Rouen Ducklings.  I purchased two Cayuga's and eight Rouen.  In the group are two boys and an extra duckling for some reason.  Still coming are ten more Cayuga ducklings and fifteen Blue Swedish Ducklings.

The idea is to have a nice balance of ducks and chickens.  Chickens will help make the compost and the ducks will keep the fields free of bugs.  All of them will help with the nitrogen in the soil.  We have 46 chickens coming.