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Runner ducks are flightless ducks that are slender in stature and stand very upright on their feet. They run instead of waddle and enjoy swimming as much as other ducks. It is fairly easy to tell the gender of adult runner ducks, males have a more curled tail and they don't quack.
We recently got 3 baby runner ducks from a family member. The two dark colored ones were 2 days old and the light colored one had just hatched that morning. I am absolutely in love with them already. They have changed so much in this first week, I can hardly believe it.
We were told to make sure that they learned how to drink by dipping their bills into a dish of water a few times a day but we found that the older ones had already figured it out and the little one learned from them on the first day. :)
A few days ago we bought them a much bigger water dish (a large plastic plant saucer) so that they could play and drink in it. They were so excited and ran circles around the brooder box and through the dish for a good 10 minutes.
The food dispenser that we used for our chicks a few years back works really well for them too. It helps reduce spillage and waste, as well as keep them from pooping in the food.
They are easy to care for, although it is even more necessary to change their bedding daily because of the water mess that they make. They grow much more quickly than chicks so we will need a large space for them soon. But for now a large plastic tub, covered with chicken wire, and a heating lamp is all that they need. As with any backyard fowl that you raise from babies, the more you handle them, the more social they will be with you.
The kids are really enjoying our new additions. Our teenage son even set up a baby monitor so he can listen to them in his bedroom. If you decide to get some, I hope you enjoy them as much as we do!
I can't believe that they are already 2 weeks old. They are huge! This week I let them play in the bathtub which they really enjoyed. It's a bit messy, but clean up is quite easy because of the drain. Then I sanitized the tub afterward.
I think this will be the last week of them being in the brooder box that we are using. They need more space to run around and I think they would appreciate a bigger water bowl. When we clean out their brooder box we put them in a small clear tote. They are big enough to peek over the side now and are so curious about what's going on outside of their brooder box.
Our daughter loves to hold them and can't wait until we know their genders and can name them!
Here is a link to my previous post about our ducks:
We officially have grown up ducks. There are little to no baby feathers on any of them, although the dark one has a funny little mohawk of baby feathers running down its neck still. They seem to have settled into their new home.
Our runner ducks don't shy away from any type of weather. I always worry about them when the weather gets yucky. We had a surprised snow storm this week and I wanted to see what they were up to.
Our ducks are getting bigger and stinkier by the day! They are definitely outgrowing the pen in the garage and will be moving outside very soon. They really need more space and a bigger pool of water to play in.
I wanted to make sure that they had a chance to play in the water, but since they were still in their brooder box I needed a small "pond". I went to Lowe's and bought a plastic paint roller tray. It holds a good amount of water and has a natural ramp built in. :) They loved it!
The main event this week was moving day! We purchased a large dog run at Costco and are working on modifying it so that it protects them from predators. We placed the placed the dog run on pavers, in part to level the area and to help with predators.
Our ducks are officially grown up. They always greet me when I come through the fence with non-stop quacking. The lightest colored one is very clearly a crossbreed, although it tries very hard to fit in. :)
Our runner ducks are now 3 weeks old and have grown up so much. They seem to get taller by the minute and have distinct personalities.