Can Ducks Eat Oats? (Answered)

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

If you are thinking of raising ducks in your backyard then you should probably know the right thing to feed them.

Ducks can eat oats and it also possesses healthy and nutritional benefits for your ducks. 

People also enjoy feeding ducks especially in public parks and pools, however most of the time we give them the wrong things to eat which can adversely affect them. 

Like everything being given to your ducks, giving your ducks oats should be done in moderation and this article will explain how to properly feed your ducks oats and how often you should do it. 

What Are The Health Benefits Of Oats To Ducks?

Can Ducks Eat Oats
  1. Vitamins 

Oats supply a number of vitamins which are beneficial to your pretty ducks’ immune system. Oats contain a lot of vitamins such as Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B9 and B5. These vitamins help maintain the duck’s nervous system and also improve brain functions. 

  1. Fiber 

Oats are made up of rich fibrous material. This fibre works on helping the ducks improve their digestive systems. This in turn leads to a duck body that is functioning and running smoothly.

  1. Antioxidants 

Oats provide your ducks with antioxidants which help boost their immunity and stay strong against chronic conditions, infections and diseases that can besiege them. 

  1. Protein 

Protein is not only essential to humans but animals and waterfowl like ducks too. When you give your ducks oats which are high in protein content, you are helping them build better muscles and healthier duck feathers.

  1. Minerals

Oats have an abundance of minerals such as Phosphorus, Iron, Zinc, Manganese to mention a few. Feeding your ducks oats will provide them with these minerals which help bone formation, blood circulation and other important body processes. 

  1. Carbohydrates

Well who doesn’t need energy to get through the day? We all do, including the little ducks. Oats have high carbohydrates and calcium content.

This gives them energy to get through their day and make them more active.

Related: Here is an article I wrote on duck breeds that are good for backyard

How Often Should I Feed Them Oats?

As much as your ducks would like and appreciate the extra treats that comes from eating oats, do not give them everyday.

Oats are and should remain a healthy treat for your birds. Some species of ducks such as the Muscovy and Magpie ducks only prefer eating oats occasionally.

They will start to ignore it after some time if you keep them.

You can feed oats to your ducks about once or twice a week depending on your discretion.

If you notice a lot of leftover oats lying around then your ducks probably do not want the oats anymore and you would need to rest for a while.

Oats are nutritious for your ducks and once you feed them properly there will be no problem.

When Can Ducklings Eat Oats?

Raising ducklings, especially from being day old chicks to maturity is a delicate business and you have to be careful about what you feed them.

The best feed for ducklings is the non medicated starter feed which processes all the right ingredients for the baby ducks to grow.

Ducklings can start eating oats between 2 to 4 weeks. Because they need the extra protein content you can mix 1 part oat into 3 parts of their feed. 

You should not feed your ducklings only oats as it doesn’t contain all the nutrients they need to grow. If you are new to duck raising you should read up on what to feed ducklings. 

Can Ducks Eat Oatmeal?

Ducks can definitely eat oatmeal as part of their healthy treats. Oats are great meal supplements and warm cooked oatmeal is a great way to treat the ducks.

Oatmeal is easier for you to cook for your ducks as they are rolled oats which have been cooked thinly to make cooking complete within 1 minute. 

You can make oatmeal for your ducks with little milk and water and you can also add fruits such as apples or bananas to spice it up for the ducks.

The instant preparation option makes it come in handy for days when you want to treat your ducks. 

As always, remember treats should always be given in moderation and it should not be an everyday affair.

Here is a comprehensive list I wrote on what do ducks eat?

Is It Ok To Feed Ducks Raw Oats?

Ducks can eat all types of oats whether cooked or uncooked. Whole oats and rolled oats are all great and nutritious for the ducks. 

Unlike the 1 minute instant oatmeal, raw oats are also processed rolled oats however they have not been boiled to make instant oat porridge.

The hulls of the raw oats provide more fibrous content for them. The hulls can also cleanse the digestive tract and system of the birds which makes them lighter and less constipated.

The hulls also promote the growth of good bacteria in the digestive tract of the birds.

Raw oats also have a higher oil and fat content than most other grains given to ducks, this gives them a high source of energy and it is most beneficial to the ducks during the colder parts of the year.

To feed the ducks raw oats you can mix it with their staple diet or you can throw it on the floor for them.

Things To Consider When Feeding Ducks Oats

While feeding oats to ducks, you should realize that there should be moderation in everything you do.

Your ducks have daily dietary and nutrition needs and you should provide the oats to meet up with that and not overboard so it doesn’t cause them health problems.

As it is, oats should not become your duck’s main diet. They have duck feed which is their staple diet.

You can mix oats in with the feed grains from time to time but it shouldn’t be done everyday. 

Do not feed the ducks oats unnecessarily as they might get tired of it soon enough and start ignoring it.

Once you notice there are a lot of oats leftover, then leave off feeding them oats at the moment and change what you are giving to them.

You can go back to feeding them oats later.

You should avoid giving the birds highly processed oats as these types of oats are high in sugar content.

Salt and sugar are not good for your ducks health and you should avoid them like the plague. 

Always sweep up leftover oats from the ducks surroundings as this can rot and grow moldy and in turn invite flies to your ducks surroundings.

If oats are served moderately and in a good manner, it will help your ducks diet considerably. 

What Are The Ways Of Feeding Oats To Ducks

You can serve oats to your ducks cooked or uncooked.

Some researchers had taken the time to study the difference between cooked oats and uncooked oats and they discovered there wasn’t any nutrition deficiency after cooking.

Cooked oats have even been discovered to have some nutrients released during the process of cooking which makes it more nutritious for consumption. 

You can feed your ducks steel-cut oats, rolled oats and quick oats.

They will eat all and any type of oats. If you are feeding them uncooked you can add it to other grain treats or mix it with their staple feed from time to time.

For cooked oats, please ensure the porridge gets warm. Do not serve it to them hot as it could end up burning their insides.

You can top your cooked oats with fruits like apples and bananas. The mash would prove quite beneficial to the birds and they would definitely scoop it up gladly. 


There you have it, your ducks can eat all types of oats and you have also seen that they are loaded with awesome nutritional benefits for the ducks.

You shouldn’t let them miss out on that.

Knowing what ducks can eat will help the growth of your backyard ducks and also be useful information for when you go duck visiting.

This way you know the right things to feed them and what not to. 

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books


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