Ducks can eat nectarines and this sweet and tangy flavored cousin of the peach is one of their favorites snacks.
If your ducks have not snacked on nectarines previously and you are worried about introducing something new to them, then you should go ahead and feed them as they would love it.
Not only are nectarines duck favorites, they are nutrient packed and have a whole range of health benefits for your birds.
For those who are not familiar enough with nectarines they are closely related to peaches and in this article we will discover why nectarines are good for ducks and ways to feed them.
What Are Nectarines?
Nectarines are a seamless stone fruit that is related to peaches.
Nectarines belong to the same Rosacea family as peaches and have a gene mutation that gives them bald skin, stronger flesh, and a higher density flavor.
Nectarines can be eaten fresh, and because the peel isn’t fuzzy, they’re often consumed with the central pit removed.
Nectarines and peaches have lots of similarities and offer almost the same nutritional benefits.
The main physical difference between peaches and nectarines is that peaches have a fuzzy coating, whereas nectarines are smooth and do not have this coating.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Nectarines For Ducks?
Like most fruits, nectarines are high in insoluble fiber. These fibers are beneficial to the gut health of your duck.
A typical nectarine contains approximately 2.4 g of fiber by weight. This level of fiber is ideal for your ducks.
Fibers trap large amounts of cholesterol in the body, allowing LDL levels to remain under control.
This tasty treat can help your ducks stay healthy by preventing them from gaining too much weight.
Nectarines are a fruit high in vitamins. Vitamins A, C, and B3 are all present in this fruit.
Vitamins improve your ducks vision, circulatory system, and keep their vital signs healthy.
They essentially keep your bird nourished and significantly boost their immune function.
Nectarines are also quite mineral-rich. Minerals are required in trace amounts by the body.
They are critical for all of the body’s systems. However, removing minerals from your ducks’ can pose serious consequences.
Nectarines contain potassium and copper in sufficient quantities. Potassium helps your duck’s circulatory system stay healthy.
While copper is important for maintaining healthy bones in the body, both are essential for their bodies.
Antioxidant compounds are a necessary nutrient for your ducks. Nectarines are high in antioxidants such as beta-carotene and plant-based polyphenolic compounds.
This strengthens and increases the immunity of your ducks. It also aids in the prevention of common bird diseases.
Carbohydrates are a vital nutrient for all animals. They provide us with energy and help us get through the day.
A single nectarine contains approximately 15 grams of carbs, which is sufficient for ducks.
Feeding your ducks nectarine is giving them a carb-rich diet to keep them healthy and energetic.
Here is an article I wrote showing you a comprehensive list of foods ducks eat
How Often Should I Feed Them Nectarine?
As nutritious as nectarines are for your ducks, they are treats and should remain so.
In summer, when the nectarines are in abundance there is the temptation of leaving out nectarines for the ducks all the time.
The ducks would readily gobble it up and many duck owners have reported that they can’t get enough of the sweet tasting juices of the fruit.
However, it is best to remember that nectarines like all fruits are treats for your ducks.
Before incorporating fruits and vegetables into your ducks meals, work with the 90/10 rule of thumb for feeding ducks.
90% of duck food should be their main commercial diet, while the rest 10% can be filled with fruits, vegetables and healthy snacks.
Can Baby Ducks Eat Nectarine?
Baby ducks should only be fed nectarines after they are 3 to 4 weeks old.
The first few weeks of their lives should be devoted to ensuring they get the right amount of protein to survive and mature.
They should be fed duck starter feed for the first 3 to 4 weeks before any other food is added to their diet.
After 4 weeks you can incorporate nectarines and other fruits into their diet.
Feed them minimal amounts as first so you do not upset their systems.
Make sure to cut the nectarines into tiny pieces to make it easy for the ducklings to swallow and digest.
Can Ducks Eat The Leaves Of Nectarine?
There is no evidence to suggest the leaves of the nectarine tree are harmful to ducks or other poultry birds.
If they have access to the leaves, it is possible that ducks can go ahead to peck and eat the leaves.
However, it is best to ensure the leaves the ducks are feeding on are fresh green leaves.
If you have nectarine trees in your backyard you might want to check them out from time to time and cut away dead or wilted leaves.
This is because the wilted leaves change their substance to cyanide over time and if ingested in excess can be poisonous to animals.
Also check out this article I wrote on ducks and duckweed
Do Ducks Eat Nectarine Skin?
Ducks are known to eat nectarine skin with the fruit.
There is absolutely no danger with eating the nectarine skin and the ducks would often gobble it up whole.
Before feeding the ducks nectarines however, ensure you wash them thoroughly.
The surface and skin of the fruits might have been contaminated with dust and agro-chemicals used by farmers while growing them.
If ingested this can be quite toxic to the ducks and in turn become a health hazard to them.
To avoid this, wash the fruit thoroughly before serving it to them.
Can Ducks Eat Nectarine Seeds
Nectarine seeds or pits should not be fed to ducks as they contain a highly toxic compound.
This fruit’s seed contains a compound known as amygdalin, which is extremely toxic to animals.
High concentrations of this compound in the body of a duck can be fatal. You should not be too concerned however.
In order for amygdalin to be fatal to your ducks, they must consume a large number of nectarine pits.
It is best to remove the pits yourself while preparing the fruit and as long as you are careful to remove them your ducks would be quite safe.
Things To Consider When Feeding Ducks Nectarine
Nectarines are highly delicious and nutrient packed fruits which your ducks can snack on from time to time.
Like all other treats it should only be given to ducks in moderation. Restrict nectarine feeding to once or twice a week.
Feeding them nectarines too frequently may cause the ducks health problems.
Nectarines have a high sugar content, which may cause the ducks to gain weight. If fed on too much nectarines they would gain weight quickly.
Also, potassium and other minerals are abundant in nectarines. In moderation, it can be essential for the body.
However, if you keep feeding your ducks nectarines, the surplus potassium will most likely have a negative impact on their kidneys.
Do not forget to wash the skin of the fruit thoroughly before feeding to the ducks and while preparing it, remove the pits carefully to avoid cyanide poisoning.
What Are The Ways Of Feeding Nectarine To Ducks
To feed nectarines to ducks, wash the fruit thoroughly, remove the pits then cut into bite sizes which are easy for them to pick and swallow.
Place in their feeder or a separate bowl and serve it to them.
To spice it up you can also make a fruit and vegetable mix adding apples, pineapples, tomatoes, carrots and other fruits as this will make the ducks love the serving and gobble it up.
Nectarines are a mutant version of peaches even though they have physical and nutritional similarities.
Nectarines are quite the perfect treat for ducks especially during summer when the fruit is in abundance.
Nectarine is a nutrient packed fruit and you can offer it as a treat from time to time to your ducks.
Ducks can eat nectarine fruits, skin and leaves however you should remove the pits or seeds as they contain cyanide which can be harmful to the birds.
Nectarines should be fed to ducks in moderation as overfeeding can lead to obesity and kidney problems.