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Wood Duck Boxes

I occassionally hunt Evansburg State Park in Montgomery County, PA. I have never seen any wood duck boxes there in the park. If the park allowed it, I think it would be a great idea to put some in along skippack creek. I would be willing to help fund raise and build/install them. Please pm me...
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

I'm not sure, but I think some organizations will donate them as long as you provide them with info following putting them up. A friend of mine had some put up on an amish farm he hunts and said he got the boxes for free, and he just has to fill out a survey about when he hunts there. Best of luck with it!
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

We generally have some left at the end of the year from our Boy Scout runs and such. Usually build and install a couple 100 a year. If i come across some extras I will let you know.

Brian Noll
Lancaster Chapter - Area Chairman
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

I want to put some boxes in or near a new 1 acre pond. I have found several plans for boxes, and the floor area of these plans varies almost 100% between 62 and 108 square inches. For purple martins the recommended floor space has increased from the 6x6 floor in some older designs to more like 6x12 for modern houses. Does anyone know if any similar studies on floor space have been done for wood ducks? All I have found is a study from Mississippi State that suggested larger areas may give a very slight increase in the number raised per house. Are houses with smaller floor space more susceptible to predators such as owls?
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

How big of a pond do you need to place the box in? Will wood ducks find it do you think, if we're just talking about a small backyard pond?
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

Talk to the Land Management Group Supervisor (LMGS)for your area from the PGC. He is the guy who will best be able to hook you up with free ones if any are available. Sometimes there are extras thru the farm/game coop program. They aren't hard to make either. I build 1 in about 45 min with my 2 4 yr olds helping. Don't forget to put a mallard tube or 2 up too! You can get a book from the PGC that has excellent plans to follow for all kinds of critter homes for about $6 i think.
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

PaArcher said:
How big of a pond do you need to place the box in? Will wood ducks find it do you think, if we're just talking about a small backyard pond?
It's a one-acre fish pond. I really don't think it will be prime wood duck habitat, but I do have lots of oaks and other hardwoods nearby.
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

Featherduster said:
They aren't hard to make either. I build 1 in about 45 min with my 2 4 yr olds helping.
I already have the cypress boards to make one. Just wondering if there is an optimal floor size.
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

Best thing to do is talk to the park employees and try to get a Scout Troop invovled. They need projects for service hours and the boxes aren't too difficult to build. I made them for my Eagle Scout Project and had no problem gaining permission from the township to put them up. Heck they even provided ladders and tools...
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

I went ahead and built a box out of cypress and installed it in about two feet of water. I didn't really expect any boarders this year. But a couple of weeks ago this guy showed up with a girl friend.
http://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~branch/images/birds/IMG_2075_crop1.jpg . A few days later a second male joined them. http://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~branch/images/birds/IMG_2161_crop1.jpg Then I saw nothing for the next few days, and I figured there was too much activity near the box. I decided to move it to a more isolated section of the pond, and today I drove a new post farther from the pier. Then I went to the box to move it. But when I opened the side, there was a lot of flopping around. I felt something round, which I thought was a snake. I managed to get the side closed, and then out of the hole the female duck flew right past my face and across the pond.

I left as quickly as possible. Will she likely come back? I had no idea they had taken up residence. All I had seen was a pair of bluebirds checking out the house. http://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~branch/images/birds/IMG_2020_crop1.jpg
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

Charlie.....good rule of thumb, if you see birds anywhere near your box, keep away.

We usually put ours out in Jan/Feb when we can tool out on th ice. We don't open them back up until late summer when the hatch is done. Sometimes not even until the next winter.
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

I added a better predator guard and a WEB camera to the box and also put a second box on the second pole I installed. I now have two pairs hanging around, and a female has been pretty active at the original box. This morning I noticed 10 eggs. The top panels are a purple martin nest, and the bottom two are the wood duck.
http://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~branch/images/birds/woodducks/20100418-11_23_32.jpg
But today I have also observed her removing eggs from the box.
http://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~branch/images/birds/woodducks/20100418-15_07_31.jpg
Now I see only 7 eggs.
I have a nest camera that I alternate between the purple martin gourd and the original wood duck nest at
http://www.ustream.tv/channel/wood-duck-nest and
http://www.ustream.tv/channel/purple-martin-nest

I sure would like for someone with more experience than I to speculate on what is going on. Why would she be removing eggs? And am I likely seeing two different ducks?

Some more details on all this are posted on the PurpleMartinForum at
http://www.purplemartin.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=15982

Thanks,
Charles
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

Birds seem to know when an egg of theirs isn't viable. I see my chickens reject some of their eggs from the brood nest at times.
 

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Re: Wood Duck Boxes

The female wood duck abandoned the first box. Either she moved to the second box, or a separate one has moved in. I have two cameras that I move between a Purple Martin nest and the Wood Duck nest.
See here for details on the different camera views: http://www.FarmerCharlie.com/Birds/BirdCameras.html
Both cameras are usually on the Martins during the day. Right now the Duck is coming in a little after 7:00 PM CDT, and I usually switch the second camera to her box at night. http://www.FarmerCharlie.com/Birds/woodducks.html
 
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