I'm thinking about getting some welsh harlequin ducks to go with my astrolorps and sex link chickens any advice would be helpful
can you keep ducks with chickens
Have a plan B.
Most times, keeping ducks and chickens together will work just fine, but sometimes, it just won't work and you need a way to keep them separate.
Get just hens so you don't have to worry about a male duck trying to mate with your hens and causing problems. WHs are pretty laid back, so shouldn't be too much an issue.
Ducks like water. My WH hated water as a ducklet and is the first in and last out now and will stand under the hose all day long. Girl loves water now.
Ducks make a mess with their water. Fill up a bowl with clean water and it will be full of mud/sand/dirt in 3 minutes. My chickens were always fine with that. They had fresh water in their coop, but never drank from that, they drank from the nasty duck water and duck pond.
I do not house mine together. Ducks have their own space from the chickens. They are a bit miffed now that the chicken has decided their coops is the best place to lay eggs. She was in there on the nest the other night when I put everybody to bed. The ducks piled up in the other end until I moved her out.
My ducks and chicken have an understanding... chicken is a lone chicken now (but I have 4 new chicks this year to get her new friends of her own kind).The ducks tolerate the chicken tagging along, but do not actually like her.
She follows the ducks and forages with them. The ducks tolerate it. They do not like the chicken. 3 of my 4 ducks chase after the new 3 month old girls and 2 of them chase after the month old babies. The WH doesn't really care about the new comers so far and just leaves them be.
After thinking for 30 seconds. Strongly consider your watering solution for your ducks should you go thru with it. They go thru water at 3 times the rate my chickens do if they are cooped up.
I did not have a problem keeping them both UNTIL one of my Australorps went broody last spring on some duck eggs. She hatched out and raised five ducklings. Well... it seems the now adult drakes are a tad confused and go after the chickens all the time to mate them. (This could happen anyway, but being raised by a chicken probably didn't help!) I'm going to butcher all drakes in the fall (I have a new batch of ducklings raised by the mama duck). Then it should be peaceable in the yard. Until that time I may have to separate the ducks and drakes from the chickens, although it's not as bad right now as first thing in the spring.
You'll just have to see how it goes.
Edited by beccaWA - 5/30/16 at 11:30am
I have a Cayuga drake a female khaki Campbell and a non-show type rouen in with 15 chickens and 4 pheasants and everyone gets along. they pen itself is 50 feet long and there are two separate coops that go into the pen there is a medical pen adn a dove pen outside the existing pen...everyone gets along and free-ranges, even the pheasants