The Ancona duck was developed in the early twentieth century in Great Britain. It was first exhibited in the United States in 1983, and only in the last thirty years has it been available to the American public. Although its numbers have been increasing in the U.S. since its arrival, the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy still classifies the breed's status as Critical.
- Egg Color:
- White, tinted, blue, green, spotted
- Breed Temperament:
- Hardy, good foragers
- Breed Colors/Varieties:
- Any solid color with white, tricolored with white
- Breed Size:
- Large Fowl
The Ancona duck is a beautiful duck that is built a bit stockier than its cousin, the Magpie, and weighs 6 to 6.5 lbs at maturity. Its unique mottled plumage can be of any combination of a single color and white, or it may be tricolored. An adult's beak is usually yellow with greenish markings, and the feet, like the feathering, are splotchy. The Ancona is an excellent dual-purpose bird, with good laying abilities (210-280 eggs per year) as well as flavorful meat that is less fatty than that of the Pekin's. Anconas are generally moderately calm and friendly, and make relatively good mothers. They are very good foragers. A HUGE thank you to BYC'ers toadbriar and Cetawin for letting me use their photos for my page.
Recent User Reviews
"More Anconas please!"
Pros - Amazing layer, calm, quiet, great forager, friendly within the flock, funny and fun to watch, beautiful
Cons - none
I have one Ancona now and getting more in the Spring because I have fallen in love with the breed.
Eggs: Our Ancona is an amazing layer who has not missed a day in 6 months - laying through the winter. Eggs are white and shaped a little more oblong than my Pekin and Runner.
Temperament: She gets along great with other breeds, including my very aggressive Pekin drake. She has the energy to keep up with my Runner but is calm enough to hang out with the Pekins. She doesn't love to be picked up but doesn't fight it either, making it easy to do health checks. I've read that some people consider them loud, but I don't find that to be the case with my Ancona. She rarely makes a noise unless it's feeding time - and the occasional really loud 'quack laugh' which we just find to be adorable.
Flight Risk: Sometimes she will jump straight up and fly about 2 feet - then struts around so proud of herself - there's no need to worry about Anconas flying away.
Size: The size is perfect in my opinion. Legs are sturdy and body is tight so very minimal risk for leg injuries or issues.
Foraging: My Ancona will eat anything in her path. She's the only one of my ducks that's eaten a large frog and a mole - with no digestive issues whatsoever. She has no issues catching them either!
Water: I wouldn't recommend getting this breed if they won't have access to water regularly for swimming. Our Ancona loves to swim!
SailorNoMore likes this.
I own three Ancona ducks, one black, one chocolate, and one lavender. They're active foragers and fairly sweet. Their colouring is quite fun to look at and they really just make me smile. Overall I'd recommend them for any flock.