If you are thinking about adding pet ducks to your flock, you are probably wondering about their diet. What do ducks eat? Along with duck feed, ducks can eat treats like fruits and vegetables as a part of a healthy diet. So, yes, ducks can eat cucumbers!
Ducks as Pets
Ducks make excellent pets if you are willing to provide them with what they need to be healthy. In return, they are generally not susceptible to many diseases, eat pesky insects, and lay plentiful eggs. Ducks also have quirky personalities and often enjoy human company.
In the wild, ducks are foragers and will eat a little of everything. This may include insects, small fish and amphibians, grass, leaves, seeds, nuts, berries, fruits, and vegetables. One other important thing to consider when raising pet ducks is if they will have access to dirt. If not, they will need grit to help them break up and digest their food.
Two key nutrients you will need to make sure your ducks are getting daily are protein and niacin. This is why it is important to give your ducks the correct kind of feed. Chicken feed does not contain the same balance of nutrients as food made specifically for ducks, so make sure you are buying the correct feed.
Cucumbers are great treats for ducks. Ducks love water and need to have easy access to it at all times, especially while eating. Cucumbers are composed of mostly water so they will give your ducks a needed hydration boost. Cucumbers also contain small amounts of niacin, which is one of the nutrients your ducks will need to thrive. An important thing to note is ducks are used to eating small pieces of food such as insects, berries, and seeds. Therefore, you should cut the cucumber, and any other fruit and vegetable treat, into small pieces to make them easier for the ducks to eat.
Other Great Treats for Ducks
Because they are foragers, ducks are not picky and like a wide variety of foods. Some of their favorites include berries, melons, and other fruits. They like leafy green vegetables such as lettuce, spinach, and kale. Squash, peas, corn, carrots, and tomatoes are also good treats.
Some duck owners also mention removing pesky insects from their gardens and giving them to their ducks. This is a good way to avoid contaminating your garden with dangerous chemical pesticides while also keeping your ducks well fed. Other duck owners raise mealworms for their ducks. Mealworms and other insects are a good source of protein.
Ducks’ varied diets make them an easy to please pet, but be careful not to go overboard with the treats as they may then avoid their feed which has needed nutrients. Ducks’ affinity for a variety of foods may also lead to overeating and weight gain, especially if food is too plentiful. However, as long as you are careful about not giving your ducks too many treats, a diverse diet can keep them happy, healthy, and satisfied.
While ducks do need enough protein in their diet, they can get too much. Depending on whether or not your ducks are laying eggs, protein should account for approximately 14-17% of a duck’s diet. Too much protein in the diet can be problematic and can cause Angel Wing. Angel Wing is a non-fatal condition where the wing develops too quickly due to too much protein in the diet. It can be reversed by lowering the protein content in the diet and ensuring your ducks get plenty of exercise.
Finally, while it is perfectly healthy to feed your ducks a varied diet, the foods they eat will impact the consistency, color, and odor of their poop.
Foods to Avoid
Like any pets, there are foods ducks should not be fed at any time. Bread, crackers, and popcorn are all foods you should not give your ducks. They are high in carbohydrates and can lead to bloating and weight gain. Ducks should also not have onions, chocolate, or citrus fruits. Finally, any processed foods that are packed with sugar, salt, and fats should never be fed to ducks.
Can Ducks Eat Cucumber?
In conclusion, yes ducks can eat cucumber along with many other healthy treats! Moderation and variety are the keys to a healthy, happy flock.
Featured Image Credit: The Len, Shutterstock