I have Indian Runners, Buff Orphingtons, Production Reds, Black Austrolops, Silkies, Showgirls, Seramas, BB Reds, and some mixed breed chickens.
If I could only have one breed it would be the Indian Runners. They are messy but they are also excellent layers.
I house my Runners and big chickens together. I have nest boxes on the ground for the runners, and nest boxes on the walls for the chickens, along with a perch for the chickens. This works well since runners once they start laying good lay their eggs at night.
I let them out during the day to roam freely (and they've never went more than half a city block from the barn), and have 3 kiddie pools in different places. I change their water every two days on a rotating basis. They lay (the ducks) better than any of my chickens. Their eggs are very tasty (about the same as a chickens in flavor only creamier). They are good for baking cakes, breads, ect... making them moister, and fluffier. Like someone else said if you have allergies to chicken eggs you can eat duck eggs. I can't say what other breeds of duck eggs taste like only the runners. I've heard that some are not that good.
People who snarl their noses at trying duck eggs... I usually give them a few to try. It changes their mind more often than not. Most people only know chicken eggs.
As far as the BIG chicken farms, those poor chickens live in tiny cages are fed hormones and no telling what else to make them lay better! Give me fresh eggs wether chicken or duck over store bought anytime. At least you know what they've been eating.
I've never ate any of my ducks but they are supposed to be top of the line for flavor in the duck world.
I use a whip with plastic tied on the end to herd them when they don't want to go to bed. But, usually I can holler go to bed girls and they single file head to bed. My husband gets the biggest kick out of this!
They are funnier to watch and they do hold conversations. For the most part they aren't that noisy unless disturbed.
I guess in the end, it's a matter of preference on which breeds chickens or ducks a person likes.