Ducks have feathers to protect their bodies which makes their body temperatures different. The average body temperature for a duck is 107.5 °F, so the summer may be a bit hot for them. They do not sweat since they lack sweat glands, but they are generally very adaptive to many conditions, including panting to release heat.
Hot weather conditions affect the overall health of ducks. They are prone to heat stress due to their high body temperatures. It can also affect female ducks’ egg production, resulting in thin-shelled or smaller eggs.
Look Out for Heat Stress Symptoms
For health and safety reasons, what temperature is too hot for ducks? Ducks should stay at temperatures not exceeding 90°F to avoid overheating. Make sure to watch for signs of overheating, like weakness, droopy wings, or diarrhea.
If you find ducks in these situations, take action immediately to help them get it. You should bring a duck suffering from heat stress to a cooler place. Then place their feet in cold water and give them sugar water to provide electrolytes.
Once the duck stabilizes, you’ll have to watch over them and keep an eye on its behavior. Be wary once you observe extreme panting and tail-pumping in your ducks. These are symptoms of other severe medical conditions, such as egg binding. (Learn How To Keep Duck Bedding Dry)
Protect from Heat Stress
It is impossible to control how hot the temperature can get. The good news is that you can relieve your ducks during hot weather. Healthy ducks will serve you well, so remember a few key details that can be the difference between ailing and thriving.
However, ducks can live happy and healthy lives with the right care. Knowing the basic things that affect their health can help you make important choices in their care. Here are some tips for keeping cool ducks when hot, especially in the summer.
Maintain a Cool, Clean Water Supply
It is critical to provide cool and clean water for your ducks throughout the day to keep them healthy. Ducks drink plenty of water when it’s hot to relax and combat dehydration. It’s critical for female ducks to have access to cool water, especially in laying eggs.
It will help provide extra water containers to give them more access. Aside from drinking water, ducks use water to keep their feet cool. They will stand in these water containers, so make sure to place them in the shade.
Provide Adequate Shade
Aside from water, shade is essential in protecting ducks from heat stress. It will give your ducks a place to relax from the heat because they don’t like sunlight. In your area, make sure there are ample shaded areas.
A shaded spot will help them conserve energy on a hot day. Usually, ducks will find a shade to nap so that a shade screen can do the trick. Another way to provide shade is by planting shrubs and small bushes around the area.
Offer Watery Treats
Ducks love to run around and eat pests like bugs as treats. You can avoid hot ducks by giving them watery treats like watermelon, lettuce, cucumbers, and berries. These will help them maintain a lower body temperature.
If you give fresh fruits as snacks to your ducks, avoid those with high acidity, like oranges. These fruits contain acid that may cause thin-shelled eggs and stomach pain for your ducks.
Build a Well-Ventilated Shelter
Keeping your ducks cool does not end during the day. It’s essential to keep their shelters well-ventilated at night. Especially since ducks are semi-nocturnal, they tend to be active at night.
A locked-up shelter with hardware cloth on all the windows is also additional protection from predators. Remember that they will need ample space for comfort and lower body temperature. Once you have secured a well-ventilated for your ducks, you can sleep soundly at night. (Read Can Chickens Eat Shrimp Shells)
Let Them Swim in a Pool
The best pool for ducks for some swimming and splashing is an excellent open water source. They can use it for cleaning themselves, fending parasites, and maintaining their feathers. Make sure that it is deep enough that they can paddle.
You can set up alternative pools using some of your backyard items, such as mini plastic pools or garden tubs. If you don’t have these items, you may dig a hole in the ground. As long as there is water with some depth, your ducks may already do some splashing.
Cooling equipment for ducks is essential to keeping them healthy. Your ducks need to have their pool to help them cope with summer well. And it’s not difficult to make a pool for them!
Feed Them Outside Later In the Day
Heat also affects the eating pattern of ducks as they tend to eat less in the summer. To keep them from falling to sickness, put their feed outside where it is cooler. It is ideal for letting them eat early in the morning and before it gets dark.
You may also leave them feed during the night in case they get hungry. Refill their water containers so they can drink when they don’t feel like eating at all.
Watch Out for Parasites
Be sure to check your ducks regularly during summer, as they are more prone to parasites. To keep them safe, clean their home and supplies daily. Parasite infections can lead to severe issues and even death.
During the summer months, you may need to take more steps to protect your flock from parasites. The way to keep your ducks healthy during the hotter months of the year is to be diligent. Check on them daily and clean out everything they touch as often as possible (and as needed).
Keep Them Happy
It’s hard to assure yourself that your ducks are happy and not stressed. But you can definitely see their excitement through their movements. They will quack in a high-pitched tone to tell you they’re having a good time.
You did a great job if your ducks are wagging their tails at you. Just like dogs, ducks wag their tails when they’re happy. The more comfortable your ducks are, the less stressed they will be, reducing their chances of succumbing to illness.
As you can see, no set temperature is too hot for ducks. Once you use the right equipment and procedures, keeping your ducks cool and happy is not hard. Remember that a reliable way to keep your ducks cool is especially important. (Read Can Chickens Eat Mango Skin)
The bottom line is that summertime can be challenging for your ducks. You need to do some extra work to keep your ducks healthy. For example, give them fresh water and shade from the sun.
In conclusion, the temperature is the top cause of death for ducklings and baby ducks. To prevent this, ensure that your ducks have sufficient ventilation, more space, and a larger enclosure. By providing plenty of water and shade, you should be able to keep your flock healthy and happy all summer long.