Can Ducks Eat Potatoes? Are They Healthy

Ducks can eat a wide range of foods. Leftovers and table scraps are some of the favorite treats we toss to these webbed birds. So, can ducks eat potatoes?

There are many treats for ducks. Most of our foods are good for these critters as long as they contain no salt and butter.

Feeding ducks is fun and enjoyable. Since these birds are not very choosy, almost anything edible becomes food. Do you know that ducks can eat ducks? Yes! Cooked duck meat is good.

In this article, I am going to take you through everything you need to know between ducks and potatoes. This will help you now whether they are good for them or not.

Let’s roll!

Can ducks eat potatoes?

The real answer is yes! Ducks can eat potatoes only if they are peeled and well cooked. These treats are rich in carbs plus a host of other nutrients.

Therefore, feeding potatoes to ducks is a good way of supplementing their diet of crumbles and pellets with extra vitamins and minerals.

If these stem tubers are in abundance, do not let them rot in your compost. Those Khaki Campbell ducks can eat them up.

Cooked vs uncooked potatoes

If you are new to ducks, you might wonder why I have said cooked potatoes and not raw ones. Some treats for ducks like bell pepper have taught us a moral lesson.

In some treats, not all parts qualify to be called food. Potatoes too have the same lesson for us! Raw potatoes are laden with a toxic called solanine.

Solanine is a neurotoxic found mostly in members of the night shade family. It is toxic to animals and insects and can lead to death when ingested.

This chemical is more concentrated in potato peels and the plants themselves. So, to be on the safe side, peel the potatoes first, cook them well then feed to your birds.

Do ducks like potatoes?

It is hard to tell if they like potatoes or not. This is especially if you are feeding this treats to your webbed friends for the first time.

Just like us, these birds have got their own tastes and preferences. Therefore, not all the birds may like them while others may do.

If you are skeptical about feeding potatoes to ducks, try with just a few of them. If your birds enjoy them, go ahead and add them on the list of treats you toss to them.

I have learnt something from my Welsh harlequin ducks; cooked foods are a favorite treats for them more than the common cracked corn and bird seed that I toss.

They love them thrown in the water and they will do the task of filtering them out.

Can ducks eat potato peels?

Although peeled potatoes are good for ducks, the peels are toxic. They are highly concentrated with solanine and are therefore not safe for ducks to eat.

Avoid feeding them those peels if you do not want to poison them. In addition to this, do not feed them potato eyes, leaves, flowers and stems.

Instead of potato peels, go for healthy and tasty treats like mealworms, strawberries and watermelon.

How many potatoes can ducks eat?

Ducks can eat as many potatoes as they can get. They do not know whether eating too much is not good for their health.

With this in mind, feed these treats to your birds in moderation. They do not have all the nutrients ducks need in their bodies.

The general rule of thumb recommends treats not to exceed 10% of the total ducks diet. Therefore feed sparingly after they have eaten their main course.

In addition to this, do not do away with their staple diet just because potatoes are in abundance.

What are the health benefits of feeding potatoes to ducks?

As I said earlier, cooked potatoes are good treats for ducks. They are rich in various nutrients which are very beneficial to ducks.

But keep in mind that potatoes are only good to ducks if they are fed in moderation. Too much of them can lead to malnutrition.

To get a better understanding, study the table below and see what nutrients a 100g of potatoes contains in them.

Nutrients                                            Amount

Thiamine                                             0.08mg

Riboflavin                                            0.032mg

Niacin                                                    1.054mg

Choline                                                 12.1mg

Pantothenic acid                              0.296mg

Pyridoxine                                          0.295mg

Folates                                                 16mcg

Vitamin C                                             19.7mg

Vitamin E                                             0.01mg

Vitamin K                                             1.9mcg

Potassium                                           421mg

Sodium                                                 6mg

Calcium                                                                12mg

Magnesium                                        23mg

Manganese                                        0.153mg

Zinc                                                        0.29mg

Iron                                                        0.78mg

Phosphorus                                        57mg

Copper                                                 0.108mg

Protein                                                 2.02g

Carbohydrates                                  17.47g

Sugar                                                     0g

Dietary fibers                                     2.6g

Water                                                   76.7g

Fat                                                          0.09g

Energy                                                  77kcal



Water is very important in the health of your ducks. As we all know, these birds love water a lot and cannot go without it.

It helps to keep their body well hydrated and all metabolic processes take place smoothly. Water forms the largest part of the blood a medium which oxygen and nutrients are transported to the cells.

Food digestion and elimination of waste matter can only happen if there is enough water in the body.


Potatoes also have some amounts of calcium in them. This mineral is very vital in the formation of strong eggshells and healthy bones.

Calcium deficiency can lead to soft shelled duck eggs and joint problems.


Protein helps in the body building. This important mineral helps ensure that the cells, tissues and other body organs are in good shape.

It is also very important to laying ducks. As you know, eggs are made up of more protein and calcium in them.


Potatoes also have some niacin in them. This mineral is very important not only to ducks but also to other waterfowl.

It helps them convert proteins, carbs and other nutrients into usable energy. This helps them keep going and healthy.

Can baby ducks eat potatoes?

Feeding treats to ducklings is a big mistake. These little critters need to stick on their starter feeds until they are big enough to handle treats.

Remember that they are little and their digestive systems are not well formed. Therefore, feeding them with potatoes can lead to health issues.

In addition to this, potatoes do not have all the nutrients they require in their health. In this case potatoes can lead to a deficiency of some nutrients causing malnutrition.

However, this does not mean that ducklings cannot eat potatoes. They will eat them up if they are well cooked and soft.

This is because the baby ducks will learn from their mother what to eat and what not to eat.

How to feed potatoes to ducks

The best way to feed potatoes to your pet ducks is by cooking them well. First of all, choose healthy potatoes that are not green, rotten or with molds on them.

Green potatoes are highly concentrated with solanine and are therefore very toxic. Rotten or moldy foods can cause ill health or even death and should be avoided by all means.

Wash the potatoes thoroughly to remove any dirt or mud that might be present on them. Use a knife or a potato peeler to remove the skin well.

Bring them to boil on fire inside a clean pot. Let them cook well until they are soft enough to be mashed with a mortar and a pestle or a cooking stick.

Allow them to cool before serving. Do not add salt all any type of seasonings. They are not good for the health of ducks.

Mashed potatoes can be mixed with other treats like chopped kale, peanuts, cabbage or other store bought commercial duck feeds.

What other treats can ducks eat?

There are a host of foods that ducks can eat as treats. However, only feed them to your birds in moderation to help supplement their diet.

They include:

  • Grapes
  • Mango
  • Corn
  • Peas
  • Tomato
  • Rice
  • Fish
  • Oats
  • Dog food
  • Cat food
  • Apples
  • Raisins
  • Pumpkin
  • Blackberries
  • Green beans
  • Zucchini
  • Squash

What should ducks not eat?

Although there are a wide variety of foods that are good for ducks, there are also some that pose a health hazard and should never be fed at all.

These foods can lead to ill health or even death when fed even in small amounts. They include:

  • Chocolate
  • Avocado seed
  • Cherry pits
  • Grape seeds
  • Store bough vegetables
  • Salty food
  • Raw meat
  • Moldy and rotten foods
  • Members of the night shade family
  • Caffeine
  • Nicotine
  • Rhubarb
  • Dairy products

Final Thoughts

Cooked potatoes are good treats for ducks. They will help supplement their diet with extra nutrients after they have spent the day foraging.

These treats should be fed in moderation because they do not have all the nutrients ducks need in their bodies.

If you are cooking potatoes for your Rouen ducks, do not add any salt, butter or other seasonings. Salt contains sodium which can damage their kidneys.

Do you feed potatoes to ducks? Let us know.

Kindly share!

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