Hi there. My wife and I have been looking into buying a house in one of two towns right now in Chicagoland.
Town A is a further commute for us, and allows us to have 6 chickens and has no regulations on ducks (I've asked, they told me that I can have them as nothing prohibits it). Town B is a much closer commute, and allows us to have 8 fowl total. Town A's house is nicer but Town B's neighborhood is nicer (but the house would require substantial internal reconstruction to fit us), but I digress.
Now, our family eats a lot of eggs. A lot. Especially me - I love eggs. Thus, I am attracted to keeping ducks - good layer breeds apparently lay longer (2-3 years vs 1-2 years), more often, and lay larger eggs. Town A intrigues me in this case as when the ducks/chickens get older and stop laying, I can bring in 'newer' ducks/chickens, and let the old ones die off as pets of old age. This is impractical in Town B where there is a hard limit.
Both Town A and Town B put these laws into effect in the last 5 years. Prior to this, neither had any restrictions. The laws were put into place due to complaints (and Town A told me that if there were complaints about ducks, similar laws would likely be put into effect).
I've also read that keeping ducks is insanely messy. Most of these towns have restrictions on smell/cleanliness. How bad can I expect ducks to be if I provide them nipple waterers in the coop, and provide food and dunking water in the run? They would be kept in coop at night, and would be in an entirely enclosed run (as required both by law and the fact that we have a lot of hawks and other fun predators around here). Both yards are kind of small, so we can't have massive runs. I could potentially build a duckpond enclosed, but filtering duck poop (which would basically be sludge) would be difficult.
If we were to get ducks, we would probably go with something like Golden or White Layers.
Edited by Ameisen - 3/31/16 at 2:56pm