Today I swapped out the waterer for the full-sized one, removed the duckling feeder, introduced them to the paint tray pool, and to leafy treats. An exciting day for ducklings!
With the previous ducklings, I introduced the pool and treats on day 15, so I’m a couple of days earlier than before, but they seemed ready. I also decided that since the pool is easy to get out of, I could leave it there full-time from the start, instead of only having supervised swims for the first week. I am keeping a close eye on them via the camera, though, just in case. And “swims” is an exaggeration; there’s only about an inch of water in the tray today, so all they can do is wade a little, like they could in the ceramic dish before today, so there is little risk of drowning.
Since they can all reach the feeder tube now, I decided it’d be a good time to remove the duckling feeder too. And as their bills continue to grow, it’s also about time to move them to the full-sized waterer, so they can immerse their full bill to clean it.
The first step was to remove the old waterer and feeder, and the bricks they were sitting on:
Here are the removed ceramic dish, feeder, and waterer, plus the paint tray and ramp I’m about to add, and a kneeling pad so I don’t have to kneel in the muck:
I took the opportunity to muck out the dirty straw, and remove the shelf liners; the ducklings bravely watched from the back, not freaking out as much as the previous ones did:
The full-sized waterer, paint tray pool, wooden ramp, and fresh straw:
I then introduced them to leafy treats, which they checked out fairly quickly:
It didn’t take them long to get excited about the treats; did you see the video?
And they were quick to go into pool, too:
Much more quick than the previous ducklings; I’ve noticed that female ducklings are really into being in water, more so than male ones.
Here are all of them except the Blue Swedish duckling:
Preening and drinking; ducks have a gland near the base of their tail that secretes waterproofing oils, so this Rouen is probably rubbing on that to help spread it (I recently saw a fascinating YouTube video about duck waterproofing):