Are ducks any more affectionate than chickens?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by wordgirl, May 26, 2010.

  1. wordgirl

    wordgirl One of the Shire-folk

    Apr 14, 2009
    I was wondering, because none of the chickens really seem to 'like' me all that much, though maybe that's just a bird thing. Would ducks be a better pet, or not?
  2. MysticalMom

    MysticalMom Songster

    Jul 1, 2009
    Quote:All 15 of my ducks come running FAST across the barnyard when they see me. Of course I'm the lady with the peas ya know? The chickens... well they basically ignore me. I think they're stuck up. [​IMG]
  3. Funky Feathers

    Funky Feathers former Fattie

    Jan 15, 2009
    My Coop
    Oh yeah, they can be very lovey-dovey! I used to have a Pekin drake who gave me "hugs"- he'd rub his bill/face on my face on command. How sweet is that? [​IMG]
  4. loopy12

    loopy12 Songster

    Apr 11, 2009
    My pekins...not at all affectionate.
    My cayugas I hatched myself and they imprinted on me. They stand under the window peeping until I come out and then follow me everywhere when I'm outside. If I sit down they climb on me nibbling my shoes and fingers and then settle down for a cuddle and a nap. They are cute beyond words. Not sure how things will play out as they are nearly 6 weeks now, maybe they'll lose they imprinting when hormones kick in?
    As for chickens I think breed has a lot to with it and how often you handle them. My buff orpington prefers humans to chickens and she is a lap hen except when she's got chicks to mother.

    Go the duck thing...they are so much fun (though messy).
  5. heatherindeskies

    heatherindeskies Songster

    May 23, 2010
    SE Minnesota
    it depends on how much you handle them, but i find my ducks are very friendly.
    they will start shaking and jump at me, like it is an attack, but they really want to be held in my arms and then they stretch their neck out and rest their beak on me... so sweet.
    i have only one friendly chicken who will sit forever on my lap, but i have to catch her first.
  6. chasing ducks

    chasing ducks Songster

    Mar 30, 2010
    New Hampshire
    My mother raises chickens and they are much more affectionate with her than my ducks are with me, but she has coddled them since day 1 where as I am a bit tougher on my birds (they're not pets). However my geese are VERY affectionate, just naturally, i didn't do anything different with them than I did with my ducks.
  7. newchickmom09

    newchickmom09 Songster

    Jul 15, 2009
    I think normaly ducks are more skiddish about being handled. My ducks will come running when they hear me open the door and be right at my side. I can sit down and feed them peas and they will stay right by me. BUT if I try to touch them then everything is off and they run away. They like to be around you just don't touch them. They kind of love you from afar. [​IMG]

    Our chickens can be picked up and carried around all day if we want. They also will come running to the side of there run when I come outside. They are the same as the ducks but they don't care if they are handled, it doesn't bother them.

    I think a lot has to do with if you handle them every day when they are very very young or not. ALso some just don't like being handled no matter what you do.
  8. wordgirl

    wordgirl One of the Shire-folk

    Apr 14, 2009
    Are geese usually affectionate?
  9. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

    Nov 20, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    It all depends on how they hatch and how you raise them....

    Poultry, or birds in general, imprint when they are born. They imprint on a species, not a person.... If they see a duck first (like a duck hatching it) it imprints on ducks a s a species. If the bird is brooded by a chicken, it will think it's a chicken... If it is incubated and see's humans first, it will imprint on humans.

    But that is not all..... then.....

    The individual bird needs to bond to it's individual "parent" whether it's fowl or not. Normally the adult duck or chicken would be taking care of the bird and providing for it. As a human parent, it requires you to constantly be around and caring for your bird. It means holding it as often as possible, feeding it both regular feed and treats, picking it up often, holding it on your lap often. Walking around allowing it to follow you. It also means not being away from it for long periods of time if you can help it. When I had baby ducks (Ming Mei was by herself) I would hire my 10 year old nephew to babysit her. I'd also give her toys/mirrors,feathers etc to help as well. Whenever I left a room, I carried her brooder with me. Out of all my ducks, she is the most heavily imprinted and bonded to me. All of my other ducklings I got in sets of two, but kept them in separate brooders to ensure they would bond to me. They weren't allowed to see each other (or live in the same house/brooder) until they were about 5 weeks old or so. All of the ducks I raised as day olds (Got them from Metzer, who uses incubators) are very loving and good pets. They like to be pet, go for walks, sit on the couch/bed with us, and just over all like our company. I have one duck, Ollie who I did not raise as a baby and her owner did not spend enough time with her, so she's a bit of a snot towards me (But we still love her and attempt to pet her, lol, she's not so bad when she's not molting or broody).

    Bonding to a duck/chicken/goose etc from the time they hatch will produce the most loving of people kind of bird. Imprinting and bonding doesn't necessarily mean they will love only one person or act the way a dog woulds. All birds have different personalities. Ming Mei only loves me and tolerates joe aka Duck_feeder, while Moxy (she imprinted on joe) loves every person she comes across, begging to be pet and loved (She even demands love and attention from our vet, lol). Victor is the only duck who enjoys being held like a baby while being snuggled. Norie enjoys standing on a lap with her head shoved into an arm pit. Vinny is a dope who also loves everyone, while Ollie is very weary of everyone and is only nice/listens to Joe.

    I will give a little warning... If you spend enough time with your duck for it to bond to you, throwing it outside and never visiting it would be cruel (and you'll lose the bond over time). Sure they can go live outside with the other birds, but you'll have to visit the bird a lot, bring it treats, pet it, pick it up, not chase it, etc.... So you can maintain the bond you develop.
  10. AngieChick

    AngieChick Poultry Elitist

    My chickens are friendlier than my ducklings (though the ducklings are warming up with a generous amount of peas). But, I like my ducks more. The chickens were coddled in the house until they were around 6 weeks old. The ducks went into the garage at around 4 days old (stinky!), so that may be the reason.

    My only experience with geese was being chased down by one for a bag of cheerios as a child. That one was definitely NOT affectionate.

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