Can I add ducks to my flock of chickens?


Nov 29, 2015
Virgina, USA
So I have a 10ft by 30ft run and 8ft by 6ft coop with 6 chickens(3 silkies, 1 Wyandotte, 1 polish frizzle, and a Plymouth Rock/Easter egger). Could I possibly add any ducks? Will they be ok with my chickens?
My 4 ducks tolerate the chicken. They seem to sort of be afraid of her (and the other chickens when they were here), but will let her hang out with them.
But by in large, the ducks do their thing and the chicken does her own even though she tries to hang out with the ducks (she will be getting chicken friends this spring so she has friends of her own kind again).

When they are penned up for a few months, they make do just fine. Only issue is food. Chicken rules. She only has to walk to the foot hut and the ducks scatter. Then stand outside the door chatting away and running around until she's done, then they go back in.
She will share, but they don't stick around long enough to know that most times lol

Mine are housed separately. I'd like to change that with the new pen, but not sure if we'll do that or not. DH thinks I'm asking for trouble since the ducks seem afraid. I don't think it would be an issue. So we'll see what we end up doing.
Both duck and chicken house have water. Duck water is changed daily since they muck it up at night. Chicken doesn't ever touch her water. She will drink out of the duck pool in the pen or the 2 water dishes in the pen that the ducks make a mess of... or go in their house to drink their water.
Lots say chickens like clean water... mine seems to despise it LOL she would rather drink out of all the dirty nasty water dishes or duck ponds around.
Ducks are out in the rain storms and the chicken is right there next to them looking like a drowned rat!

So if you want ducks, go for it, but depending on how your coop is set up and how the ducks and chickens get along, you might need to have separate housing.
I Got ducks last summer with my chickens. I have 5 ducks and 11 hens. All girls.
They get along fine. My ducks rule and the chicks move to,accommodate them.

Water is the only issue. They share housing and have half our backyard. The only water that stays clean is the bucket with nipple system.

I,love to,watch the ducks. They are funny. We have 3 Welsch Harliquins and 2 Pekin mixes. We are getting 3-4 duck eggs a day. The chickens have just about stopped except for the 4 that we got last summer but that is probably dozen a week. I thought the chickens would lay more or they are hiding eggs and it is too cold to look.

I would,like to have different housing for,them mostly to,keep the chicken water cleaner. So if you can figure out the water, I think they will,do,great.
I keep bantam ducks with large fowl chickens but our Silkkes are kept separate. Drakes have a corkscrew anatomy that will kill a chicken hen if he tries to breed her but mine have never tried. The ducks hang out with the ducks and the chickens hang out with the chickens so there is no hanky panky between them. People who brood chicks and ducklings together can have problems but as long as a drake has his own ducks to breed with be is not having romantic ideas about chickens, no matter how enticing her bustle is to the rooster.
Could I possibly add any ducks? Will they be ok with my chickens?
The best answer I know for this is maybe. A few years ago the neighbor asked if I'd take a couple young chickens as she had no room for them and I had an extra pen. She'd been keeping them with the young ducklings. They were about 2/3 plucked when I got them. Looked awful and I had to put a lamp out with them at night to keep them warm due to so much bare skin. Two weeks later the heat source was gone and they were feathering out nicely although they never seemed to get as large as they should have.

Adding ducklings to full grown chickens can be so different from what my neighbor did. You can try but have a back up plan just in case it doesn't work out.
The best answer I know for this is maybe.


There are things you can do to improve your chances. Have a lot of space, for one. You do seem to have quite a lot of space for your birds, both in the pen and coop, so that's one thing in your favour.

One thing I haven't read or heard, but makes sense to me, is that the temperament of the chicken breed will matter when it comes to their willingness of keeping the interspecies peace. Now silkies are, I am told, quite docile. I would say the same thing about the Wyandotte. Not sure about the Polish; I've heard they can be a bit nervous because of the limitied field of vision imposed by their head-tuft? And I have no idea about the crossbreed.
But I would take my chances. Had you had Lohmann Browns, I would be more worried. Those birds can be downright evil.

Also, here's a neat little trick if you want your ducks to eat their grains without the chickens getting to it: Put it at the bottom of a bucket and fill the bucket up with water. Ducks will plunge their heads through the water and eat the grains; chickens will at most drink the water.
So here is an update, I have 1 silkie rooster, 2 unknown gender silkies( most likley hens), 1 female polish, 1 female Wyandotte bantam, and an Easter egger/ Plymouth Rock rooster. I was looking for a new home for the Easter egger/ Plymouth Rock roo (aka Daimond) but now I'm trying to find somewhere to capon him if possible.

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