Can catch as many Muscovies as I want, FREE. Know nothing about 'em?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by bigoledude, Jan 21, 2011.

  1. bigoledude

    bigoledude Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 16, 2011
    SE, Louisiana
    Two parishes (counties) away, the local government has what they consider an overabundance of Muscovy ducks along the canals that criss-cross the entire parish. I called the police and the Wildlife & Fisheries and both have encouraged me to capture as many as I want. Many of the ducks have what appears to be a portion of the wing that either pokes-up in the air or droops down. Looking at the photos here, I don't see any of y'alls ducks with this condition. It is an unsightly thing.

    I have a canal behind my house. There is tons of aquatic plants there both winter and summer. There is a huge amount of insects and snails also. Here is a list of questions for now.

    There will be lots of traffic passing while I'm catching these ducks. What is a humane-looking way to catch the Muscovies? I wouldn't hurt the birds while catching them anyway. I just don't want to use a method that even appears to be hard on the birds.

    Will foraging for all of the foods I mentioned above, together with some feed, negatively impact the flavor of the meat? What is a low-cost feed to supplement with?

    I will attempt to catch what appears to be youngish birds. How do I get them to stay close to home?

    I will not keep any trapped birds with that broken-wing looking thing. What is the deal with that?

    If I must pen them up in order to keep them from initially flying off, how long does it usually take for the captured birds to stay close by?

    If I build nest boxes for them, how likely are they to use them?

    Are possums a threat to ducks?

    Is a brooder needed to start the young ones off?

    If this is too many questions, please forgive me.

    All of y'alls replies will be appreciated. As I'm sure you can tell, I am new to the Muscovy duck. I can see them being part of our lives from now on. Where we live is sooo perfect for keeping them. There is a huge osprey who's territory is just behind the canal. She keeps the other birds-of-prey at a very long distance. Now, raccoons and stuff may prove to be another thing.
  2. treldib

    treldib Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 5, 2010
    Southern California
    Oh man...sounds great. Im not an expert in the 'scovy field so I can't answer that many of your questions. Just wait...they will come [​IMG]

    I do know however, that the ducks with a "droopy wing" have a condition called "angel wing" that is caused by too much protein in their diet wheb they are young. It is easy to correct when they are young but it is uncurable once they reach adulthood. It poses no threat except for them not being able to fly (you could just clip their wings instead) and the fact that it is unsightly, like you said.

    Good luck! [​IMG] [​IMG]
  3. ruby

    ruby Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 10, 2008
    Gold Hill, Alabama
    I'm sure you will have to cage them for a little while so they will stay at you house. If they don't have a moma you may have to brood the youngest ones. I think they will thrive, with little help. other than that here is a bump. Lots of folks on this board know more than me.. I haven't raised ducks since I was a kid.... It sounds like your in Louisiana, my kid lives in New Orleans. ruby
  4. destinduck

    destinduck obsessed with "ducks"

    Mar 20, 2008
    1 cast net,second choice, snag hook( only two ways I know) 2 no,not if you add chicken layer pellets. 3 Have to pen them (isnt that the whole point of gettin them anyway? 4 Its called angelwing its from wrong foods like too much protien or just being fed bread all the time (when young) 5 you will have to clip their wings to stay in your yard. 6 they may use boxes ,they may use the ground. 7 yes 8 yes or the mom will raise them. I KNOW you live in LA. My bro lived in Metarie for many years. JUST so you know the police and wildlife and fisheries want them out or killed. DONT LET ANY YOU RAISE GO!!! They are a nuisance all over the canals. The police used to ride around and shoot nutrias and "scovies" probably still do, so get as many as you want if for keeping or eating,but for dang sure DO NOT add more to the so called"wild population" Otherwise just enjoy them in the canals.
  5. goosedragon

    goosedragon Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 28, 2009
    Central NC
    Quote:Muscovy will often let their wings droop espically in a hot climate. The only way to tell is to watch to see if they are able to move them to a normal position. The wings that poke up is the classic angel wing.
  6. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 4, 2010
    San Diego
    I think it's great that you're going to go out and catch some. You can try a net, but some birds are wise to that and if they see you with one, they will be gone before you can even get close. But, if done right, it might work. I would also suggest having another person or two with you. You can bribe them with food to bring them close.
  7. bigoledude

    bigoledude Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 16, 2011
    SE, Louisiana
    The canal that I mentioned is 50 YARDS behind my house. I had no intention of keeping my Muscovies penned up. They will be able to forage along the canal for grasses and insects galore. The canal alone, will provide a salad bar like I've never seen anywhere else! It has many many varieties of aquatic vegetation and an abundance of aquatic snails. I hope the ducks don't eat a lot of fish. The wild ducks we kill that are primarily fish-eaters taste like rotten fish.

    I'm hoping that in a very short time, I will be able to cut-em loose and they won't fly off. Having to feed them long-term is a cost I'd like to avoid. Does anyone have an idea about how long it takes for them to consider this place HOME?

    It would be nice if I could get them to return home each evening for dinner and then, pen-em-up for the night. A friend in Oklahoma has Muscovies that fly home every evening when he rattles a coffee-can half-full of corn.

    I grow a vegetable garden. I read where a member here tried to feed her ducks squash and they wouldn't eat it. Others told her to cook it. I will not be cooking my duck's food but, I would love to feed them stuff from my garden. What can I feed them (uncooked) that they will eat?

    I was thinking of making a trap like all young boys use. The box propped up on a stick, with a string tied to the stick. Except, my box would be made out of chicken-wire and a very light wooden or PVC frame. It would be about 4-feet wide, 6-feet long and 1 1/2 feet tall. With several small doors in the top to remove the caught birds.

    My flock will be well managed. I will not contribute to the "nuisance" population. As-a-matter-of-fact, I have plans to draw from those "nuisance" birds on a regular basis.

    Any more trapping ideas before I waste my time with my lil-kid idea?
  8. Bleenie

    Bleenie Wyan-DO's

    Have you asked at the county if they would be willing to help? It would be easiest and least stressful on them if you could set up a temporary area to feed them in, like a chain-link kennel. Maybe the county would be able to help put somehting together, especially if they want to resolve the problem.

    Once they're used to it you should be able to easily close them up in it and then go in and catch them... that will be the hardest part, just wear a thick jacket and watch out for the claws. Muscovies are smart but they're pretty easy to train with food, if you go out and feed them everyday at a certain time they will EXPECT to see you there and if you start feeding them in a certain area they will EXPECT to be fed there once they're used to it.

    If they have Angel Wing they shouldn't be able to fly.
    Also, I would observe them for a while, it's really up to you but I would make sure not to take any hens that may be on nests. you could always hand raise the ducklings if you wanted...they'll be a million times friendlier than the ones you'll be catching. Plus, feral broody hens can be Vicious!!

    Good luck!

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by