Ducks Week 7: Duck Digestion

Warning: This post mentions duck poop – if you are offended by such references, just skip to the next post 🙂

Veggie treats for 5 ducks for one day!

Veggie treats and cracked corn for 5 ducks – for a single day!

Ducklings eat like monsters, and no wonder, because they poop like monsters, too. This is because their digestive systems work differently from ours – birds wouldn’t be able to fly if they had to carry a lot of excess weight in the form of undigested food around for hours. So, they have to feed frequently and eat a lot, too.

The way our ducks create output,  if I left even just one duck free to roam around in the house overnight, there will be no clean spot left on the floor to walk on. Perhaps that’s one reason why ducks are not too popular as house pets even though they are really intelligent, endearing and entertaining creatures.

When our ducks used to come indoors to eat/sleep, up until they were put in their cage to sleep, I had to run behind them constantly with a roll of paper towels. This was because every 2 minutes, one of them would deposit a puddle of stinky wet diarrhea-like poop, and sometimes even walk into and track the stuff everywhere.

While this actually looks pretty sweet on Ms Pompom Duck, it’s a no-no for wild mallards!

I’ve read and seen pictures on the internet about a clever invention: a duck diaper/harness that a duck can wear so it can safely walk  around indoors (or go out with their humans) without making a mess everywhere, but it takes quite a bit of commitment to keep a duck diaper clean!

Aside from that, I cannot imagine any of our wild ones tolerating wearing something like a diaper. After the experience with the leg bands I should know better than to try to make them wear anything! Now that our ducks live outdoors, our house thankfully stays clean, but our yard and walkways are constantly covered in poop no matter how often we hose them down, so we have to be careful where we step! Quakie is also fond of leaving messages and notes for us on the door step in case we were not around when she came to knock…



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