It can be tough to determine what is safe and what is not when it comes to feeding ducks. They enjoy eating a wide variety of things, which makes people want to feed them whatever they might have leftover from lunch during a picnic or after a barbecue in the backyard. However, not everything that a duck is willing to eat is safe and healthy for them. For example, people feed bread to ducks at public ponds all the time, yet bread is certainly not a healthy food choice for ducks.

One of the most common questions that people ask is whether ducks can eat grapes. It’s a good question, as grapes are readily available at the store and are easy to share, whether at home or a public park. So, can ducks eat grapes? The answer is yes! Grapes are an excellent snack option that can be shared with domesticated and wild ducks alike. Here is everything that you need to know about feeding grapes to ducks.


The Healthy Reasons That Ducks Should Eat Grapes

Grapes are good for ducks, just as they are good for humans. They contain impressive amounts of antioxidants that will help keep ducks from getting ill, and they are packed with compounds that can help fight off serious diseases, such as cancer. Grapes are also full of various vitamins and minerals that ducks need for optimal health and longevity. Fiber-rich grapes help keep ducks regular too. Grapes that are offered to ducks should always be ripe, however; otherwise, they may cause uncomfortable signs such as nausea, diarrhea, and general stomach upset.

little girl holding a duck in the table
Image Credit: Cait Eire, Shutterstock

Grapes Should Never Be a Main Food Staple

Although grapes are good for ducks, there can be too much of a good thing. Grapes are full of sugar, which when consumed in high amounts, can result in health problems such as diabetes and obesity. Therefore, grapes should be thought of as a healthy snack or treat and not as a staple. They should never make up more than about 10% of your duck’s overall diet, and they should not take the place of other healthy fruits and veggies that can and should be fed to ducks, such as:

  • Oats
  • Berries
  • Melons
  • Corn
  • Lettuce
  • Kale

In addition to grasses and hays, ducks need a variety of different foods in their diet to meet their nutritional needs as they age.

bag full of grapes
Image Credit: Pixabay

Preparation Guidelines and Serving Suggestions

Whole grapes should never be fed to ducks, as they are a choking hazard. Ducks do not always chew their food and will try to swallow grapes whole. Unfortunately, ducks have choked and lost their lives due to trying to swallow whole grapes. Luckily, choking can be avoided by simply cutting grapes in half before offering them to ducks.

Also, it is important to thoroughly wash grapes to get rid of pesticides and other toxins that could be lurking on the skin. You can feed ducks the halved grapes alone or prepare them in a variety of ways before making an offering. Try one or more of the following ideas:

  • Mush Them Up: Use a potato masher to mush a bowl of grapes, then place the bowl on the ground so ducks can enjoy the slurry inside.
  • Make a Fruit Salad: Mix a handful of halved grapes up with banana slices, fresh berries, and corn kernels, then serve it up to the ducks as a salad.
  • Do Training: You can use halved grapes as treats to train a duck to come to you when you call them or to head back into their enclosed habitat when you tell them to.

You should find that ducks enjoy accepting grapes in any way that you try offering them up. Utilizing different feeding methods is more for your enjoyment and convenience than for the duck’s.


Final Thoughts

Grapes tend to be a favorite snack for ducks of all kinds! However, it is important to be aware of how many grapes you are feeding a duck, whether it is yours or lives in the wild. If you are ever in doubt, stick with feeding a duck just one or two grapes at a time. Are you surprised to learn how beneficial grapes are for ducks? Why or why not? We want to hear from you, so consider leaving a comment.

Featured Image Credit: Pixabay