Ducks and adding chickens

Smiller1090

Chirping
Sep 27, 2020
62
112
88
Fountain County Indiana
I currently have 10 ducks. 4 adult pekins, 1 adult Muscovy and 5 Muscovy ducklings. 3 of the pekins are drakes and will be out of the run soon. My run is 10’x20’ and 8’ high completely predator proof as I live in town where there are several stray cats. My coop is 4’x3’ and 3’ high ceiling inside. My husband just informed me he doesn’t like the rich flavor of the duck eggs for basic eating but can’t tell a difference when baking. He wants to add chickens to the run for basic breakfast eating which I’m all for but I want to make sure I integrate them right. I’ve heard horror stories such as the chickens plucking the ducks eyes out and I just don’t want something like that to happen. Any suggestions on what I need to prepare before brings some hens home? Thanks
 

HuffleClaw

Quack!
Premium Feather Member
Jul 8, 2018
22,841
125,443
1,587
Alabama
The main worry is if a drake (male duck) breeds a chicken hen. They have totally different reproductive anatomy... and it could potentially injure, or even kill the chicken hen. Is there any way you could make a separate space for chickens?
 

Smiller1090

Chirping
Sep 27, 2020
62
112
88
Fountain County Indiana
I will be removing the drakes before putting hens in br I have not sexed the ducklings yet to see if there are drakes among them. They are still two months away from breeding maturity. Unfortunately due to being limited on yard space living in town I don’t have another place to build a second coop and run.
 

416bigbore

Pretty Girl
Premium Feather Member
Jun 11, 2020
886
1,374
226
NC
:welcome I am new to having both Ducks and Chickens together. We originally started out with four Isa Brown hen chicks just for the purpose of a few fresh eggs on hand and then two small breed Mallard hen ducklings. Then four weeks into it we decided to add ten unsexed Rouen/Pekin mix ducklings which produced four Drakes and six Hens.

So far we have been very lucky and everyone has been getting along very well for the most part. I am in the process of giving the four chickens their own Coop and run and separating the four Drakes from the Hens because of incorrect ratio, just to help avoid any issues.

I agree with HuffleClaw that you don't want your Drake to try mating with your hens because of the possibly of hurting them. Since limited space is an issue for a second coop and run, you may want to re-home your Drake and just keep all girls to help avoid any mating problems.

The other issue I see with adding new birds ( chicks or adults ) to your existing flock, this too can cause problems. You never want to introduce new baby chicks into an adult flock unless they are their own babies and momma should protect them from others.

To help avoid any issues by adding new adult birds into your flock. Quarantine for awhile is a good practice to make sure no one is sick. Then it's a good idea to find a way to keep them separated within your coop and run for away so they can all get used to seeing each other first, over just throwing them right into your existing flock.

Birds are no different then any other animals that live within a small group, they have a pecking order also. So just throwing new birds into your flock without proper introduction can also cause unwanted issues.

Good luck and please keep us posted. :)
 

Smiller1090

Chirping
Sep 27, 2020
62
112
88
Fountain County Indiana
:welcome I am new to having both Ducks and Chickens together. We originally started out with four Isa Brown hen chicks just for the purpose of a few fresh eggs on hand and then two small breed Mallard hen ducklings. Then four weeks into it we decided to add ten unsexed Rouen/Pekin mix ducklings which produced four Drakes and six Hens.

So far we have been very lucky and everyone has been getting along very well for the most part. I am in the process of giving the four chickens their own Coop and run and separating the four Drakes from the Hens because of incorrect ratio, just to help avoid any issues.

I agree with HuffleClaw that you don't want your Drake to try mating with your hens because of the possibly of hurting them. Since limited space is an issue for a second coop and run, you may want to re-home your Drake and just keep all girls to help avoid any mating problems.

The other issue I see with adding new birds ( chicks or adults ) to your existing flock, this too can cause problems. You never want to introduce new baby chicks into an adult flock unless they are their own babies and momma should protect them from others.

To help avoid any issues by adding new adult birds into your flock. Quarantine for awhile is a good practice to make sure no one is sick. Then it's a good idea to find a way to keep them separated within your coop and run for away so they can all get used to seeing each other first, over just throwing them right into your existing flock.

Birds are no different then any other animals that live within a small group, they have a pecking order also. So just throwing new birds into your flock without proper introduction can also cause unwanted issues.

Good luck and please keep us posted. :)
Thank you. I plan to build a temporary enclosure in a corner of the run to put the new hens in for introductions. I will be getting mature laying hens as I don’t want to have to heat chicks right now. It’s starting to get cold where I am and we have harsh winters.
 

Callender Girl

Crowing
Sep 18, 2018
1,322
7,009
466
North Central Iowa
If you can figure out any way to do it, I would separate the chickens and ducks because ducks - bless their messy little hearts -- are far messier than chickens, who need drier housing. Too much moisture can lead to respiratory problems for the chickens.

My chickens and ducks free range together during the day, and I have not had any real behavioral problems among them. And, I have three drakes, so it probably depends on your birds; temperaments.

Good luck and welcome to BYC! And, I'm sorry your husband doesn't like those yummy duck eggs!!
 

Smiller1090

Chirping
Sep 27, 2020
62
112
88
Fountain County Indiana
I believe I have figured out a way to separate them! In my garden shed I have a work bench. I can enclose under the bench for nesting boxes, feeder, waterer etc... and I can build a run off the side of the shed with an opening for them to go freely in and out of the shed. I will share pictures tomorrow on the space and will take some more ideas!
 

Smiller1090

Chirping
Sep 27, 2020
62
112
88
Fountain County Indiana
Now shifting gears again 🤦‍♀️. My father in law gifted me a bunch of lumber, plywood, wire and an old metal brooder that is 5x5. So now I’m going to build a coop and use the metal brooder for the roof. Will post pictures of the brooder when I pick it up. It’s pretty cool, I’ve never seen anything like it.
 

Smiller1090

Chirping
Sep 27, 2020
62
112
88
Fountain County Indiana
Now shifting gears again 🤦‍♀️. My father in law gifted me a bunch of lumber, plywood, wire and an old metal brooder that is 5x5. So now I’m going to build a coop and use the metal brooder for the roof. Will post pictures of the brooder when I pick it up. It’s pretty cool, I’ve never seen anything like it.
 

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