Can Ducks Eat Cranberries? Simple Answer & Feeding Tips

Written By Jill Taylor

Can ducks eat cranberries? Yes, most ducks love cranberries and will eat any variety. There are a couple of things to remember when preparing cranberries and feeding them to your ducks.

Read on to find out everything you need to know about feeding cranberries to your ducks.

can ducks eat cranberries

What are Cranberries?

Cranberries are a type of fruit that grows on vines, similar to grapes. They grow in bogs and marshes where they are submerged underwater for most of the year. The cranberry plant has tiny, hair-like roots that allow it to stay firmly planted in the ground and thrive.

Cranberries look like small, red-colored grapes and can be used in many recipes and even as a food to feed ducks.


Can Ducks Eat Cranberries?

Ducks love cranberries because they taste sweet and sour – much like how other fruits such as oranges taste like. Remember though not all berries are good for ducks! Some berries contain sugar substitutes such as sorbitol which ducks cannot digest.

Cranberries do not contain these sugar substitutes and are therefore safe for ducks to eat.

Are Cranberries Safe for Ducks?

Yes! Ducks can eat cranberries as often as they like – just make sure that you remove the leaves and stems before feeding them to your ducks.

The stems and leaves of a cranberry plant are not edible, so if a duck tries to eat a stem or a leaf it will get sick. Make sure that there are no signs of these parts in the cranberries you feed your pets duck.

In most cases, even when the cranberries have been frozen or put through a blender, both the stems and leaves can still be seen easily. If this happens, compost the berries immediately so they don’t accidentally end up getting eaten by your pet ducks.

Health Benefits of Cranberries for Ducks

There are several health benefits of feeding cranberries to your ducks. These include:

  • Cranberries improve digestion and help prevent constipation.
  • Cranberries help fight off infections and boost the immune system by preventing bacteria from sticking to their cells.
  • Cranberries at high levels can help lower blood pressure in humans, but make sure that you don’t feed your pet duck too many or they might get sick. Ducks are more sensitive than humans to chemicals found naturally in some foods, so make sure you keep this in mind when introducing new foods to your pets’ diet.

Most importantly – cranberries are delicious for ducks! They taste sweet and sour which most ducks enjoy immensely. Feeding your ducks a variety of fruits is the best way to keep them happy and healthy.

Is There Any Risk in Feeding Ducks Cranberries?

duck in grass

Cranberry juice is sometimes used as a human remedy when one has an infection. This is because cranberry juice contains ursolic acid which can prevent bacteria from sticking to the walls of your bladder, thus helping you avoid infections in that area.

The effects of this in humans have yet to be fully researched but it may or may not work for ducks too.

When feeding cranberries to ducks, only give them the amount they can eat at one time so that they will not get sick from eating too many berries. The chances of your duck getting sick from eating too many cranberries at once are very low, but it is still better to be safe than sorry.

Cranberries can also lower blood sugar levels in humans and may potentially cause an insulin spike. If you know that your duck has diabetes or any other condition that affects their blood sugar levels then do not feed them cranberries or talk to your vet about the best way to give this fruit to your duck safely.

How to Prepare Cranberries for Ducks?

Ducks can eat fresh cranberries straight out of the bucket or you can feed them cranberries that have been frozen, dried, crushed, blended, or turned into cranberry juice.

Cranberry juice is one of the healthiest things for humans to drink and it is also safe for ducks to drink too! You can make your own cranberry juice at home by mixing one cup of water with four cups of pure cranberries. Then you just heat up the mixture slowly until it starts bubbling and then turn down the heat so that it does not burn.

Let simmer until half the liquid has evaporated then pour it through a strainer. This will leave you with fresh homemade cranberry juice which you can store in your refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Can Ducks Eat Dried Cranberries?

Ducks can eat dried cranberries as long as they have not been treated with sulfur dioxide.

If the package of dried cranberries does not say whether or not it has been treated with sulfur dioxide then you should assume that it has and toss it out immediately so that your ducks do not accidentally ingest sulfites which can be dangerous for them to eat.

Sulfur dioxide is often used by companies to speed up the drying process of fruits and vegetables, but it can affect pets differently than humans due to their different body chemistries. This means that some animals react badly when exposed to this chemical and others are completely fine after eating a small amount.

In most cases, an animal doesn’t need to eat too many sulfured foods before they start to feel sick. Symptoms of a sulfite overdose include diarrhea, vomiting, lack of energy, and difficulty breathing. If your duck exhibits any of these symptoms then you should take them to the vet immediately.

Can Ducks Eat Cranberry Sauce?

Since cranberry sauce usually contains added sugars and spices, most brands are not safe for waterfowl to eat just as we mentioned earlier.

However, there may be some brands out there that do not contain extra additives and they could very well be safe for ducks to eat. If you are unsure about whether or not the cranberry sauce that you have contains extra additives then do not feed it to your ducks until you have checked with a professional to make sure it is safe for waterfowl.

How Often Should I Feed my Ducks Cranberries?

Since cranberries are extremely healthy for ducks to eat, you can give them as much as they want as long as the container of cranberries that you have is safe for them to open and eat directly from without worrying about additives.

If the container says it has been sulfured then do not feed it to your ducks and make sure you discard any leftover cranberry sauce too so that your pets don’t accidentally ingest something unsafe.

Read More: Can Ducks Eat Apples? 6 Excellent Benefits

Can Ducklings Eat Cranberries?

baby duckling

Ducklings can eat fresh cranberries, frozen cranberries, dried cranberries, and even cranberry sauce!

However just like adult ducks you should not feed them anything that has added sulfites in it since waterfowl are even more sensitive to these chemicals than adults. Plus ducklings already have an underdeveloped immune system so there is no reason to provide them with extra work for their bodies to do.

Read More: Can Ducks Eat Bananas? 5 Awesome Benefits

Why do Ducks Love Cranberries?

Ducks simply love eating whole raw cranberries because they are sweet enough for waterfowl to enjoy while still maintaining their nutritional value which makes them a great healthy snack.

Cranberries also help ducks maintain clean and sparkling feathers due to the cleansing properties found within this fruit.

Can Ducks Eat Cranberries – Final Thoughts

If you’re wondering whether or not your ducks can eat cranberries, the answer is yes. There are a few things to keep in mind when feeding them though. First off, they need to be fresh before being served as old ones may cause an upset stomach for your feathered friends.

In terms of variety, most will enjoy any flavor so it doesn’t matter which type you decide on providing that they have all been washed beforehand for consumption by duck standards.

Thanks for reading our article about can ducks eat cranberries? We hope this cleared up any confusion surrounding the topic and helped you figure out what food items your ducks would like best!

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