The next adventure

So…

The other night as we were finishing up at the farm, JR asked if I wanted to go shopping and get a few things. Nothing exciting — just a few odds and ends for the farm and house.

I was almost done so I said “sure,” but I just had this off feeling, like he had more up his sleeve than he was telling me.

As we were strolling through the aisles I finally realized why we were there.

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Baby chicks and ducklings can indeed be found at many farm supply stores during spring, and he wanted to scope out the selection.

He raised ducks as a kid and told me last fall he wanted ducks now that we have the outdoor space. Luckily he was reasonable and agreed to wait until spring.

There’s still snow on the ground, but he’s already plotting. 😉

He said the store trip was important so I could see how nice and cute the ducks were. Not that I’m against the little fuzzy birds, but I’m campaigning for about 10 instead of who knows how many…

We haven’t brought any home yet, but I have a feeling it won’t be long. I hope the dogs don’t scare them too much (or vice versa)!

We shall see. In the meantime, Brit @ Duke’s House, I think I may need some advice. 🙂

About Lisa

Hi, I'm Lisa. Dairy farmer's wife and Minnesotan to the core, I write about rural farm life, running down country roads, and the food, faith, and family that bind everything together. Follow along on my journey.
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5 Responses to The next adventure

  1. Brit says:

    Wow! Ducks!

    As you already know, raising animals can be expensive. I was just tallying up our average Rural King budget and we seem to spend about $210/month there. That is for dog food and duck food and “stuff”. Obviously Duke eats a lot, he’s a big boy, but the ducks are not cheap and the expense does not seem to diminish over time.

    We started off with a kiddie pool filled with pine shavings in our garage when they were young. That wasn’t hugely expensive, but it was a bit messy to shovel out.

    When they got a bit older and the weather got steadily warmer, we moved them outside and built a 10’x10′ dog kennel under the leanto part of our shed for them. After the raccoon massacre of 2012, we added a chicken wire roof to the (duck) dog kennel. With the duck kennel, we also had the ongoing cost of straw and the extra chore of frequently shoveling out the kennel and replacing the bedding.

    Finally, they got old enough to stay outside, so our (duck) dog kennel remains empty and will only be used to house Duke under special circumstances (which is probably never – he still hasn’t ever been inside it). Now we feed the 15 ducks (and whichever other animals are eating the food) about 125 lbs of meat bird crumbles per week. I have a feeling that raccoons and who knows what else are eating a lot of our duck food. Chris has also nearly completed construction of a floating duck house for them – another not so cheap project.

    All in all, I enjoy having the ducks, but, had I known how expensive they would be, I might not have been so easily persueded to buy them.

    Assuming that you are all in for ducks, I highly recommend getting some Indian Runners because they are pretty funny looking and my favorite to watch. We have a mix of Indian Runners, Pekins, and Cayugas.

    • Lisa says:

      Thanks for taking the time to share all of this Brit! I’m hoping it doesn’t get too expensive because we can use lots of stuff we already have, but I still know I’m in for some surprises. Now he’s talking about a few geese and turkeys too…

      Did the ducks stay warm enough over winter on their own, or did you have to heat their kennel area?

      I can’t imagine keeping them over our
      Minnesota winter. In the fall we will have to butcher whatever birds we do get, which I also know nothing about. It should be an interesting adventure.

  2. Heidi Nicole says:

    We had ducks, chickens and geese growing up – I never did like the geese, even to this day I hate them. I’m convinced they are going to chase me!

    But…I think its awesome you’re thinking about getting them. They are so darn cute when they are little! And I think a few ducks is a lot easier to care for than a whole row of calf hutches!

  3. Olivia Stocum says:

    Awww…. ducks. I wish I wasn’t allergic to feathers, or we would have ducks, and chickens.

  4. Suzanne says:

    Oh goodness, it sounds like you guys are going to have some ducklings before too long! We never raised ducks but I grew up with chickens.

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