Raising Ducklings - The clean and easy setup to raise ducklings in the brooder

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if you're planning on bringing ducks

onto your homestead that means that

you're going to have to deal with

brooding ducklings unless you buy adult

ducks which makes this a pretty manage

show it's springtime and lots of people

this time of year are bringing ducklings

onto their homestead before you do make

sure you have a really good brooder set

up that's what we're going to talk about

today in this video we're going talk

about how to brew ducklings clean neat

easy we're going to make it so much more

simple so much less smelly in depth on

how to do ducklings in the brooder

without it being a total gross mess if

you've ever raised ducklings in a

brooder then you know ducklings make a

huge mess you got your wood chips down

the water they start swimming in it they

make a big mess everything gets wet

you're changing out those wood shavings

constantly we have a brooder set up that

can make this so much easier so the

first thing that makes our birders setup

work really well is the fact that we

have multiple bruders for our animals

our Rooter set up is made up of these

Rubbermaid tubs we like to keep four of

these tubs to full at all times if you

have two of them full with maybe turkey

poults and one ducklings in another

chickens and one ducklings in another

you have two free and that way on

cleaning day which that's today for me

you have two that are ready to go you

can move all your animals into the two

clean ones and meanwhile you can clean

the dirty one you can see the brooding

tubs here these are Rubbermaid tubs you

can get them at Walmart they're $20 for

these tubs a lot of times you see people

brew chicks in the like the tractor

supply metal basins or the big

Rubbermaid stock tanks those will look

really nice as bruders but they're

really expensive so instead of spending

a lot of money buying four or five stock

tanks get yourself a couple these

plastic rubber maids they work just as

well they're easy to clean and they're

20 bucks apiece so you can see we plan

on using two of them so we got four two

we would have a few extras so $60 in

rubber maids and these things last

forever so at the end of the season they

stack into each other which is really

nice you can put them up on the loft up

on a shelf and you won't need to you

know worry about them taking up a bunch

of space the next thing that you'll

notice is we have our lights already

hanging above our brooders so we have

some hooks that are screwed into the

ceiling here we hang our life and we

hang them from ratchet straps these

little white hooks are screwed and they

got to be really strong because you want

to be hanging you know your heat lamps

the heat lamps or the feeders are

working on ratchet straps our preferred

light for our birder setup is this

premiere one Prima heat lamp the reason

these are really nice they have this

plastic grate on the front and all this

covering the bulb it keeps the bulb from

rusting and breaking out in two years it

also is a much more safe light if this

were to fall down for some reason and

wind up at the bottom of your brooder

the light bowls the heat lamp isn't

going to come in contact with the wood


I have this other one here just to show

as a comparison this is often what you

see at like tractor supply or home depot

that gets rusted it gets broken the

bulbs get stuck in the metal there and

if this were to fall then you have

direct contact with your wood chips and

that could cause a fire in your barn so

these are not as nice to use as these

premier one primo lamps and we'll have a

link in the description so you see we've

screwed in the white hook it's nice and

strong I can I can hang off that thing I

take a ratchet strap I put a ratchet

strap in the bottom and you can do rope

you can hang this with regular rope but

I just like to use the ratchet straps

because I like to be able to make micro

adjustments so here I have a hook in the

lamp and then I have my hook above in

the white hooks here every day when you

come out if you think the lamp needs to

be up a little higher Ratchet it up just

like that as they get older the

ducklings will get warmer they'll have

more feathers on them

and so more down on them and that means

each day you can ratchet that up a

little bit get it higher and higher out

of the way these ratchet straps I got

mine at Walmart with the same time I was

buying the tub these are like three

dollars apiece there's a 10-foot ratchet

strap rope every time you got to make an

adjustment you got to retie your rope

you're not and I don't like messing with

rope so when you're all done with this

brooding for the spring you throw all

your equipment in the Rubbermaid

themselves put it up on the shelf and

it's ready to go for next year and then

I just kind of take the excess I just

loop it just like that and then I also

take the electrical cord and to keep

things nice and neat I hang the

electrical cord over the hook so it's

all the way out of our way there just

looks nice neat keeps things clean and

it works works really really good


now I want to show you that what we put

into a duckling brooder to keep it nice

and clean this is what the inside of the

brooder looks like you'll notice we have

wood shavings that is very absorbent so

we get the fine shavings attractor

supply you're probably wondering what in

the world am I doing with this this is a

paint painters trough this is an idea

that I got from the survival podcast

jack spear throw he's got a great

channel on YouTube he's got a great

series called the duck Chronicles and

we've been watching a lot of the duck

Chronicles getting ideas for our ducks

this year because we brew two ducks in

the past and it was messy and disgusting

and we didn't want to have messy

disgusting bruders the reason why duck

bruders get so gross is because

ducklings love to swim they look to

splash in the water they poop in the

water if you swim in the water you

splashing it and then they go running

around and drag it all over everywhere

it's nice as they like to swim but we

don't want to doing it in the brooder

and making a mess out of the brooder and

so to prevent that we use first this

trough this painter's trough and then I

get these you can get these right I got

this fancy little trough that's nice and

level from Home Depot these are sold

right next to them this is I guess for

rolling your brush on or something they

fit right in perfect you I like to make

a level so I kind of press them in here

you'll see and the nice thing is this is

easy easily bend this stuff so you can

get it just right

okay so that's more or less level I can

get it perfect later but that tray the

ducklings are able to walk on and then

we take this which is usually used as a

feeder most people use these as feeders

for chicks we actually use this for the

water again idea that we got from Jack

over at the survival podcast the reason

why these work great for Ducks and water

is because they can stick their whole

bill in there and rinse it out ducks

need to rinse out their nares so a

nipple drinker water doesn't work well

for ducklings

they need to be able to submerge their

whole bill and swish it around and this

water allows them to do that but it

doesn't allow them to get in it and go

swimming and then drag all that into all

the wood shavings so this thing works

perfect now it doesn't have an

incredible volume so as they get bigger

you're going to need to either put more

of these in with them or change it up as

they get bigger and I'll show you an

idea that we're going to experiment with

today but that this system has worked

great this has been our first week and I

literally have not had to clean out this

brooder it's been one week we've only

had six ducklings so there's not that

many but we haven't had to clean out the

brooder yet we've fluffed it and added

some shavings but not a deep cleaning

like we're going to do today so this is

the setup it fits right into our

Rubbermaid tub I put it the long way and

then I pull these shavings down the side

of it and down the front and that way

the ducklings are able to walk right up

to it right on top of it drink and then

walk away and they just keep so much of

the water and the mess and the gunk in

there and it's easy to clean which I'll

show you in this new one I'm going to

try I've never done this but I'm going

to try to use farmer Brad's mighty micro

water this one has the drinker cups when

you push down on this you can see the

water comes through I'm going to try

these for the ducklings because I think

this will keep it clean and neat too and

the nice thing about this it has an

automatic float valve in there and a

hose hookup so I can hook a hose when it

gets a little bit warmer I can hook the

hose right up the flow valve shuts the

hose off when this is full and the

ducklings will have constant fresh water

constantly being refilled so I'm going

to experiment with farmer Brad's mighty

micro water you can check out farmer

Brad's channel or go to farmer brad

website farmer brad calm to learn more

about those haven't actually used it

with the ducklings yet but I'm going to

try it so this is our feeder in the

beginning when they're real small we use

these mason jars into

this little bottom you can get this at

any big-box store we use these when

they're real small as they get bigger

they start to make more of a mess on

these feeders we'll switch over to a

larger hanging style feeder which you'll

see in the upcoming week but for now

with the little ducklings we just put

one of those in the bottom we have our

feeder we have our water set up we're

going to put this in place so that heat

lamp is warming everything and getting

it up to that ambient temperature and

then we'll move our ducklings out of

that the one that they're in right now

will move them into this nice clean new

one and then we'll clean the old one


we have the old perimeter the dust we've

moved into the nice new clean one now we

can take this and work on this one

without having to work around the

animals which is the way to do it this

is what the waterer setup looks like

when when it's ready to be emptied so

you can see the bottom of this is

actually full of water and it's nasty

gunky water so I can remove this and

it's very easy to clean I just take this

out I mean if you got a garden pour this

on the garden I hose this out and I hose

this stuff out that's why I like having

this tub with this removable top the

stuff is just it's easy to clean it's

easy to keep name I mentioned I don't

like using that heat lamp the nice thing

about this setup I just use that one as

a spare when I'm doing a cleaning day

and I want to keep them warm and pre

warm my new brooder now all I have to do

with this setup is slide the new brooder

over to the existing good light and I

can unplug this bad light

and now everybody's in the nice clean

new brooder light is on them they're

getting comfy nice clean birder easy to

clean I take all those messy woodchips

with all the poop and all the Ducks

water and all that stuff and I'll bring

that to my compost pile that'll make

really good compost that we can age and

turn so I'll just take it in the

Rubbermaid outside dump it in the

compost spot wash the inside of the

Rubbermaid out with the hose real quick

and bring it back in place this system

is the way to do this it makes it nice

and easy and you can set this up if you

had to set it up in your house you can

set it up in your house you can set up

in the basement

I prefer with the smell of the animals I

prefer to keep it out of the house if

possible if the weather allows us we

have this nice insulated barn which were

able to do it in but you could do this

in a basement you could do it in a

mudroom whatever works best for you

we're pretty much finished taking care

of the cleaning the ducklings are in the

nice new clean brooder I want to show

you a few more pieces of equipment that

have made this even easier and even

better I have here a little electric

thermometer this is a very old one but

I'll put a link below to a newer version

it's just nice to have a little electric

readout so when you come you can quickly

see what the temperature is so you can

keep an idea week one they want to be

about 90 degrees and then you start

lifting that light and making it cooler

and cooler so it's good to have a

thermometer keep an eye on your

temperature we had a really cold night

this week I had to turn to heat lamps on

because it was can brutal the last thing

that I have added to this setup this

year we've added a nest cam to our

brooder cool thing right now there are

people watching this live streaming on

YouTube hi guys nest has nothing to do

with animals it's not made for animals

it's actually a home security camera

nest cam into power it works over Wi-Fi

so it sends your video through Wi-Fi to

the internet where you have a login and

an app that you get when you get your

nest cam our barn is a good ways from

the house in the late at night early in

the morning in the middle of the night

we're able to check on the nest

you can see right now there we go there

we go that's the delay the delay it's a

one second delay second delay I'm going

to shut it off that goes annoying you

can see you can real-time you can see

into your barn what's happening on your

camera on your nest cam you can watch

your ducklings or your chicks or your

turkeys and see are they running around

do they look healthy are they all

crowded up in a pile do they look to

cold do they look to hot

I put the thermometer right in front of

the nest camp so I can keep an idea on

the temperature on those cold nights I

can see through the nest cam if the

feeders getting low where the water is

getting low so it's just a really

helpful tool if your barn and your

animals are far away from your house

well you can check on them every 10

minutes with your nest cam when you send

your kids out to do the chores hey buddy

daddy I forgot to tell you make sure to

unplug the heat lamp okay and then you

can talk so it's an intercom system to

to your barn and we are live-streaming

the nest cam mmm look at that keep you

around we've added the live stream to

our YouTube channel maybe you've seen

our duckling video maybe you're watching

right now on YouTube I'd see is anybody

watching right now it wants a shout-out

and fin it Chad show Ellen Mitchell so

they've been watching the live stream

you can watch the live duckling stream

too thanks to the nest cam so that nest

cam has been a huge addition to our bird

or set up and we're going to get a

couple more of them as we get our new

animal this year we're going to have

some feeder pigs at the end of the week

so more meat chickens are coming there

if nest cam I believe that nest cam was

$200 so they're not cheap but they will

pay for themselves

perfect example a couple nights ago we

had a really cold snap out of nowhere in

some of the YouTube viewers watching the

live duckling cam messaged me and said

hey the ducklings look cold

I checked the camera and sure enough

they were all piled up on each other I

was able to come out it was

eleven o'clock at night I was able to

come out add another light and make sure

everybody was warming up if I hadn't

seen that if the YouTube viewers hadn't

noticed you can actually lose animals

that way so being able to keep an eye on

your animals saves you money

save the animals well-being maybe even

their life so something like that nest

camp can really help out and we have a

link below you'll notice I have two

links for that if you don't want to do

the affiliate thing I just think the

nest cam is awesome I think it's a nice

addition so I have two links below one

of them is an affiliate link if you want

to support what we're doing here at home

study we appreciate it

the other one is not an affiliate link

you can click on it and just buy it we

won't get anything from that I just

think it's a really nice addition for

for especially a homesteader who's not a

full-time farmer if you're not out 24/7

with your animals if you're inside

working or even if you have a job that

you have to go to but maybe you know you

have family member closeby you could

stop in that nest cam is a little extra

peace of mind on your barn and on your

animals so it's been a huge addition to

our set up if you have any questions be

sure to ask in the comments below

because we check comments every day we

answer back there as many as we can if

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