I know so many people who have goats. I also know others with ducks. What if, as a homesteader or pet lover, you want to raise ducks and goats? Is it possible? Do ducks and goats get along? What should you consider when raising both animals together?
Do ducks and goats get along?
Ducks and goats do get along, and if you can take caution of certain things such as feed and water, you will raise both animals successfully.
Why should you consider feed and water when raising both animals? Do ducks eat goat feed? Can goats eat duck feed? Are there benefits of raising ducks and goats together? Read this article.
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Raising Ducks and Goats Together
Some people who already have goats decide to raise ducks as well (and vice versa) for various reasons. Lets discuss some benefits of raising both animals.
The Pros of Raising Ducks and Goats
After reading the benefits, you will surely want to raise both animals.
1. Ducks Eat Bugs. Goats Do Not.
If you raise ducks and goats, the ducks can help remove insects and other little animals such as earthworms, nematodes, spiders, etc. from the barn.
With ducks around, insects that lay eggs in the poop of goats and those that disturb your animals will be gone.
2. Ducks Will Eat the Spill of Goat Feed
If you raise goats, you will agree that goats waste a lot of feed. Why throw wasted goat feed away when ducks can eat it?
It is completely safe for ducks to eat goat feed (so long as it is still fresh and not moldy), so you can use ducks to remove wasted goat feed from the ground.
3. Your Goats Have Extra Companions
Ducks and goats do get along and they do not bully each other (unless, of course, when there is limited feed). Your animals will be more active and happier together. Just make sure that you consider the concerns of raising ducks and goats together.
While you can have just one goat or just one duck, they are both animals that naturally live in groups and will be happier with a friend.
As you can see, raising ducks with goats is full of advantages. What should you consider when raising ducks and goats? Continue reading.
The Cons of Raising Ducks and Goats
Do not worry, these cons are easily avoidable, if you know what to look watch out for!
1. Ducks Spill Too Much Water
Goats need clean water because their rumen (where their food digests) does not need harmful microbes to compete with the microbes already in it.
A thing about ducks is that they love water so much and will step on the water with their dirty feed. Ducks will also spill water all over the area.
To solve this, you should have separate water troughs for ducks and goats. You should keep the goats water in a bucket that is hung at a height that your goats (but not your ducks) can reach.
This is recommended if you have tall goat breeds like the Boer goat. If your goat breed is short, you should use a small tank that the ducks cannot jump into, but big enough for your goats to reach in and collect water.
2. Goats Should Not Eat Duck Feed
Why should goats not eat duck feed? Simply put, goats are herbivores and ducks are omnivores. A herbivorous animal such as goats is an animal that gains nutrition by consuming plants and products of plants. An omnivorous animal such as ducks can eat both plant, animal, and their products for nutrition.
How does the food preference of both animals affect their feed? Processed duck feed is made from both plant and animal-sourced ingredients while goat feed is made from plant ingredients.
The digestive system of goats cannot easily digest the nutrients from duck feed, so the goats will show symptoms of malnutrition if they eat duck feed.
Since duck feed will take longer to digest in goats, your goats may also be more prone to a bloated stomach when they consume too much of duck feed.
What can you do to prevent this from happening? Here are some useful tips:
- Do not spread duck feed in an area that goats can reach.
- Keep duck feed in the coop or an area large enough for ducks to enter, but too small for goats.
As you can see, the cons of raising both animals can be avoided.
Ducks and goats do get along. As a tip, you should not give your ducks access to the water of your goats, and you should not give your goats access to the feed of your ducks. Remember to take both animals to the vet if you think something is wrong with them.
What do you think? Can you think of a way to prevent ducks from reaching the water of goats? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.