We got the ducklings moved into Fort Duck yesterday afternoon. They were so excited and so happy to have so much space to run around in.
We are going to keep the heat lamp on for another week and see if they are fully feathered by then or not. The Welsh Harlequins seem to be more feathered out than the Pekins. Their markings are becoming quite striking. I can’t wait to see what they will look like as adults. After a week, we will probably keep the heat lamp on at night for another week, and by then all the feathers should be in and the nights will be warmer.
The ducklings did great overnight in the duck house. And it was nice to just be able to throw fresh straw down instead of having to deal with wet sand. The drain is working great by the water. There were not standing pools or really gross areas.
We will leave them inside the duck house for another 24 hours so that they know that this is home now and then tomorrow we will let them out into their fenced area and they can eat all the dandelion greens they want. To start with their penned area will just be about 10 feet by 24 feet. We will expand it as they get bigger or eat all their greens. When they are bigger than the chickens we will allow them to go with them during the day.
We mucked out the brooder box yesterday after we moved the ducks and then sprayed it out with water and let it dry out in the sun. We need to spray it down with vinegar this morning and let it dry again and then add a perch and fill it with straw. The weather is beautiful today, so it should dry again fairly quickly and then we can get the Royal Palm turkey poults and the Barnevelder chicks moved into it. It will be nice to get them out of the bathtub. The turkeys keep flying out, even though we’ve got it blocked off three feet up.
The turkey poults are turning white and getting some of their black markings now. They won’t be fully feathered for some time yet. The chicks are almost fully feathered and their markings are beautiful. I can now tell Willow and Tara apart. Tara has yellow bloomers and Willow has darker ones. Their head coloring is almost identical, a dark stripe with two light stripes on either side. Anya has the stripes, too, but with spots in them. Buffy’s head is solid colored. I’ll try to get individual pictures of them today when they get moved.
Well, enough lolly-gagging for me. I need to go out and help the husband to finish the duck pen fence panels and then we have to work on the tractors and start work on the coop.
I got my straw bale garden started. Just four bales so far, but that is a start. All we did so far is get them in place. I will start conditioning them today and I should be able to start planting out on May 12th. I am starting peas and green beans in the house for it. I do need to get more bales, but the truck only fit five and one of those is for duck bedding. We will pick up five more today, one for turkey and chick bedding and four more for the garden. I think I’d like a total of 25 bales, so we will need to get moving on making trips.
I will try to do photos of that as we go along.