How much water for ducks?

Different types of ducks have different needs for water

source: Katie Thear
Country Smallholding July 2002 p15

Ducks vary in terms of how they use water, and this affects how much water they need. All ducks need some access to water. Some are perchers, others are divers, and then there are dabblers.

Perchers include those from the Cairini family, which like to perch in trees, and they include Muscovy ducks, Mandarins, and Carolinas. They need water depths of between 2.5 ft and 3 ft, or 75cm to 90 cm, and like to nest some way above ground, for example in nest boxes which use long ramps.

The Aythyini family of ducks are the divers, and they seek their food on the bottom. They usually have shorter bodies, and legs further back, a body design that helps them dive. Tufted ducks and Pochards come from this family. They like a minimum of 3ft of water (90 cm).

Dabblers include Mallards and others from the Anas family, and they dabble to find their food on the water surface. They should have at least a foot of water, so as to be able to immerse themselves and tip themselves up-ended.