Alright, thinking of breeding ducks this/next season, so...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by aduckstolemyheart, Jan 27, 2011.

  1. aduckstolemyheart

    aduckstolemyheart Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2010
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    I have a few questions! I have duckling fever, and I really want to incubate my own eggs. SO that rules out just buying some duckings somewhere.

    My flock, right now, is hopelessly mixed, and my only hope for non-mixed ducklings are the two Pekins. But of course, having a Swede drake as well will keep me from ensuring they are pure.

    And since getting Isolde (Izzy) I REALLY love the Saxony breed.

    So here's what I'm thinking...

    What if I get a nice Saxony drake, and a couple more Sax hens (Holderreads has some beautiful Saxony ducks), and start a breeding flock, that I can keep separate from my mixed group?

    questions though:

    1. Is it easy enough to keep one group separated, at least during the breeding season, without them getting too worked up, escaping, etc?
    2. Would Isolde do alright being taken from my current flock, and put in with the Saxony group, or would this be difficult on her?
    3. Assuming she could go in with the breeding group, do any of you who know about the Saxony breed, think Izzy has any serious faults in type that would keep her from producing nice Sax babies? I would love to show sometime. I think she's beautiful but am not really an expert yet on the breed, as she is the first Saxony I have owned.

    Thanks in advance, I value all your input!! [​IMG]

    Some pics of Izzy just in case someone is not familiar with her:

    [​IMG]

    Color on her back and wings:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2011
  2. toadbriar

    toadbriar Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just wanted to say that she is gorgeous - I had seen lots of saxony photos, but these close-up ones of yours really show that they are stunning! I love the colors on her back - she looks like a watercolor painting [​IMG]
     
  3. aduckstolemyheart

    aduckstolemyheart Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thank you! I got her from a fellow BYC'er, so she has to be pretty right? [​IMG]

    They really are a gorgeous breed, and Izzy so is just calm and quiet, that I would love to have more of them!

    Don't get me wrong I love my silly Pekins and their comical personalities, but if I was going to breed a duck, the Saxony is my choice! That and I don't see many of them out there really, so I think that adds to why I want to do this.
     
  4. aduckstolemyheart

    aduckstolemyheart Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh and also, are there any special considerations I should know about when it comes to housing two different flocks? Should I only separate them during breeding season, or always?
     
  5. toadbriar

    toadbriar Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just don't know. I've heard of folks who keep them in separate pens and free-range on alternating days, if you free-range. I didn't want to deal so I just stuck with one breed. How much would separate enclosures complicate your life? it doesn't really take much to divide them up inside the greater pen area.
     
  6. aduckstolemyheart

    aduckstolemyheart Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mar 23, 2010
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    I was kind of thinking about making a separate yard for the breeding flock, so they can forage and free range too. It would just be a matter of building a separate night pen and putting up the fencing.

    We were planning on rebuilding the coop and stuff anyway this summer, so I can't imagine it would be too difficult on that end...

    Just not sure how the ducks would handle it all.
     
  7. I do find that that separating does cause some unhappiness for my flock, it's clear they all long to be together. They quack to complain and occasionally find ways to break through to the reunite with rest of the flock. That usually leaves somebody stranded and causes more quacking. You will find them staying next to the fence where ever they can be closer to the ducks they are separated from, and spending a lot less time free ranging. I do have a setup where two "flocks" can free range separately like you are considering.
    I had a case where a drake developed an obscession for a particular hen that was in the other pen. When I allowed them all together again at the end of the breeding season her back and the back of her neck were featherless and the skin dug down a layer after the first night.
    Anyone else see these sorts of things?
    I don't want to discourage you, they do get more used to it as time goes on. Seems like we always have to be making some new arrangement the ducks have to adapt to and they often feel obliged to complain at first.
     
  8. aduckstolemyheart

    aduckstolemyheart Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Those are the kinds of things I want to hear about, so I can consider everything before making a decision. I really would like to hatch some eggs this year, would be nice to have them from my own flock. But since I do not intend to keep all the ducklings that hatch, I think I'd have an easier time selling the left over drakes if they were pure and not mixed. Besides, I have always heard you should breed for the betterment of the breed, not just because you enjoy it.

    Getting the sort of hodge podge flock I have now was fine when I just wanted some friends for my Pekin, but now that I want to do more with my ducks, it's kind of a problem. As I love them, getting rid of some is simply not an option, so I am kind of stuck!

    Was hoping to hear experiences, like yours, so I can get an idea of how others would handle, or have handled this sort of thing.

    I do worry about the issues you mention, because the happiness of my birds, is always a priority for me.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2011

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