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Duck Ratio Help?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by 3aviana5, Jun 5, 2012.

  1. 3aviana5

    3aviana5 New Egg

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    Hello! As a new duck raiser, I have a question about our babies:

    We have 5 6-week old ducklings, raised from 3 days old; we think three are Indian Runners and two are Pekins (got them at farm store in a mixed bin). We also believe that there are 3 males and 2 females. According to all of our research, this ratio will not work because the males will be too agressive to the females once they are mature. However, if we get another female so there is an even ratio, is there a way to encourage the ducks to pair up so there isn't too much aggression? Or is our only route to get rid of 2 of the males, get more females, or keep them separate? If they won't pair up separately, what is the minimum female-to-male ratio needed?

    Just as a note, I'm fairly sure it will be hard to find homes for the males in my area- lots of people have extra drakes that they are trying to get rid of on Craigslist, etc.


    Thanks!

    ~Aviana
     
  2. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    [​IMG]. Breeding ratios really depends on the personality of all the ducks. Honestly I really wouldn't advise anything less than a 1:2 ratio. Some people have had success with a 1:1 ratio but it is a risk of overbreeding or possibly drowning the duck.
     
  3. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    It's generally said a min of 2-3 ducks per drake....

    Can it work other ways? cough, mine is seriously mucked up lol I have 4 ducks( i had 5 but lost a duck, nothing anybody did just one of those things) and 3 drakes and one that is turning 5wks so it's not right.. i lock my drakes up at night separately so they don't beat the crud out of each other lol The younger pair are finally getting tail feathers back since they used to fight a lot.. it's all settled down after i split the flock apart at night though... they forage all together during the day.. acres to choose from.

    I can't seen to re-home a drake, nobody wants them around here and i am NOT eating any, they are good drakes so i am trying(?) to up my ducks... I am ever so hopeful my newest baby is a duck but still hard to tell as they are Muscovy and they like to hide their gender [​IMG]

    so i guess my point is if you have options by all means take them, it will be better if you have your ratio's more balanced.. unfortunately i can't practice what i preach..
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2012
  4. 3aviana5

    3aviana5 New Egg

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    Thanks Kevin, that's what I thought but the 1:2 ratio is a lot easier to do than the 1:4 or 1:5 ratio that I've heard! Regarding the personality, that definitely makes sense- one of the drakes is pretty timid but the other two have a lot of energy, so there might be issues with them down the road.

    Going Quackers, I totally understand that nothing turns out nicely how it's supposed to. :D That's what I thought, it is going to be hard to rehome the drakes... so I think getting more females would really be the best option.

    How soon would I start to see problems amongst the flock if the ratio isn't fixed right away? Would it be, like, fall, or sooner? Also, would I need to get females that are the same age, or could I get them younger or older depending on what I can find?

    Thanks both of you for your help!!
     
  5. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    My issues started this year just as winter started to end.. the boys aren't 1yo till Aug! well the younger ones.. my oldest guy is over a year... he is fine.. I brought in 3 ducks last fall they are only a month or two older than my oldest birds..(so 14/15mths) The issue i have is they are not as tame as my day old/ couple week old raised birds... they are still pretty flighty, I honestly prefer younger birds but your individual mileage will vary.. if people have tamed the birds as younger ones you'll likely have a better result, in my area 'Scovies ducks are hard to find so i took what i could get lol

    I think the other birds settle better when new birds are around the same age or younger.. but i can only go by my own experiences.. hopefully others will chime in on what they have experienced.
     
  6. Blondiega1

    Blondiega1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I currently have 4 drakes and 2 hens (pekins) free range on my 5 acre lake.
    Everyone is getting along nicely!
    My big drake will occasionally decide he needs some "loving" and will grab whomever he can get, male or female.
    But other than that, no issues.
    The Fab 5 flock together all the time, and my big male hangs with the geese. I think that he thinks he's a goose. LOL
     
  7. 3aviana5

    3aviana5 New Egg

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    Thanks everyone for all the advice! Going Qackers, that makes sense about the age of the females, and Blondiega1, it sounds like the off ratio isn't an issue for you... so I guess it just depends on the personality of the ducks.

    I think I'm going to see if I can get more females or keep them separated, but I might have to let the drakes go :( hopefully there will be other options though.

    Thanks again!
     
  8. Blondiega1

    Blondiega1 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So far it hasn't been.
    Just keeping my eye on them.
    The Fab 5 have all been raised together so they are a tight little flock.
     
  9. 3aviana5

    3aviana5 New Egg

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    Ok, so then it might work out... I think I'll just wait and see how they do. Thanks so much for the advice everyone!
     
  10. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    The majority of mine have all been raised together too(with the exception of the 3 ducks I added as several mth olds).. actually my worst fighters are the pair of young boys i brought in as a 3-4wk pair... It really does depend, i have found a tremendous improvement when i separated the birds all down... created 'drake stalls' in my barn and let the girls have the larger portion of the barn, this seems to have relieved the tension. My plan is to increase my girls.. by allowing at least 2 ducks per drake.. sometimes drakes fighting isn't the issue, the issue is a duck getting er.. loved on too much.. my one duck is regaining her neck feathers finally since she was the only lady foraging with the boys up till recently until mama duck and Junior re-joined.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2012

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