Keeping birds can be an exciting project.
But what if you lack space?
Rearing chickens and ducksin the same house will save space, time, and food.
But can you keep chickens and ducks together?
Ducks and Chickens Have Different Needs
Before you start, understand what ducks and chickens require because some of their needs differ.
For example, ducks rely on their owners more than chickens.
You can release your chickens and let them find their food outside their coop. And in the evenings, they usually come back to their shelter themselves.
Chickens are also better at adapting to changing climates or colder weather.
But ducks are different. You must pay special attention to them every day.
You have to herd them out in the mornings, and you must herd them back in the evenings, unlike chickens.
Ducks also have different sleeping patterns, and they may sometimes become restless at night when stressed.
What happens when chickens and ducks are put together?
Should the differences mentioned above discourage you from keeping them together? Well, they shouldn’t.
These birds can stay together because they are more alike than they are different.
However, the ducks are usually aggressive at first. Luckily, most domestic ducks don’t have territorial behaviors.
And once they feel at home, the violent behavior stops.
Remember, this shared arrangement is only advised for adult ducks and adult chickens.
Ducklings and chicks should never be put together. When growing, the two species have different needs and behaviors.
Let them adapt to their specific needs by putting the ducklings with their kind in another place until they mature.
But once they grow, you may give both ducks and chicken the same meal as long as it is nutritious.
Poultry layers mash is one good example. So, once they grow, you can feed them together.
Both birds also search for worms and seeds on their own.
However, chickens are quite good at finding bugs, seeds, and edible plants.
Ducks love water.
So, imagine them sharing the same drinking containers with chickens.
There is no stopping them from bathing and playing with the drinking water.
And even the most patient farmer doesn’t want to add/change the water every 30 minutes!
To beat this, make separate containers for drinking and bathing.
The drinking water can be suspended at an accessible height.
The bathing water, on the other hand, can be placed on the ground. Have fun, ducks!
Will ducks survive in former chicken houses?
Can you keep ducks in an enclosure where you used to rear your chickens?
The answer here is that it depends. What kind of arrangements did you have for your chickens?
For example, if the house did not have well-built fencing, your ducks will be sitting ducks.
They can quickly become prey because ducks are also not as fast as chickens when escaping danger.
And sometimes a predator may kill all the ducks. Picture the loss.
Building a robust enclosed coop, therefore, helps keep the predators out.
There is no major issue that prevents farmers from keeping ducks and chickens together.
Once you learn the basic requirements of both the adult and their younger ones, you are all set.
Add a lovely bathing arrangement for your ducks, and voila.