Getting creative with dumb ducks and drinking water in winter
Having a small backyard flock of ducks in winter can be a pain in the quacker. I have Muscovy ducks and even though they don’t spend the majority of their time enjoying water like other breeds they still jump in a tub of water and get cleaned up. My biggest problem was all my Muscovy ducks failed obedience training, they refused to adhere to the rules about bath time in the winter, which were few and simple.
1: no baths in drinking water…that’s it, one rule, pretty simple.
But Ducks like chickens are also dumb and simple, they plunge in no matter how cold it is. Once thoroughly soaked and clean they waddled back to the barn making funny crunchy noises and huddled, miserable and cold.
I came up with a brilliant idea to keep my Muscovy misfits from committing suicide while playing in ice water. I filled a large plastic milk jug with water and tied it to their tub. I expected the floating jug would pose a scary bobbing threat or render the water tub to squishy to jump in with but I was wrong, they jumped in immediately
floated on their backs to mock me
then flew away to tell another
My frustration peaked, I scolded them severely expecting humble submission. Instead due to misfit blood that mingles sluggishly in their brain a second jumped in the tub as the first flew out and on a straw bale, spread her wings and tried to terrify me with her Dracula poses.
I’m not scared
Still not scared
I’m still really not scared but your missing head and tribal dance is a nice touch
At this point I’m almost ready to let them suffer the consequences for being stupid and trying to be scary. I trod back into the house to rack my wrecked brain for a creative solution that works.
I searched my brain for stuff I’ve seen hiding throughout the house and garage. My husband is a hoarder….we have a lot of stuff. A slow careful scan with my eagle eye in the garage revealed a promising prospect for my duck water dish problem. It was an old plastic garbage pail lid with a zillion holes drilled in that was once my compost bin, “Umm, wonder why it’s in here and my compost pail is outside….doesn’t matter I shall bring my precious treasure in the house and conform it to the image in my head”.
I first dry fit the garbage lid on the water dish and it fit nicely.
I grabbed a serrated bread knife and a steak knife because a girl never knows what kind of knife she needs until the job begins. I figured I would start by poking the sharp little steak knife into the plastic lid and begin to carve out a half-moon shaped hole, one on each side of the raised molded handle, this would ensure the ducks had plenty of room to dunk their heads while preventing their ability to jump in. I would start with the little steak knife then finish the job with the much longer bread knife if need be. I quickly found both these knives were highly inadequate for the job and grabbed my trusty jig saw as Maddy looked on with fairly bored disinterest.
It worked like a charm, my hole was maybe not so beautiful because I managed to mangle it up with the stupid little steak knife in the beginning but that doesn’t matter, what matters is it works. I already have a plastic mechanical tie holding a de icer in place so the water doesn’t freeze
and now with this fantastic new lid the rest of winter with ducks and water shall be stress free….I don’t understand why the stores don’t sell an idea like this so I’m going to patent mine but first it needs to be tested with the ducks.
Looks good so it’s a keeper. I will call my new creative idea a Dumb Duck Water Dish and I’m sure that it will sell or at least help one of you that have the same problem with watering ducks in winter.