Ducks and Chickens Together??

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Bill1st, Feb 22, 2015.

  1. Bill1st

    Bill1st Chirping

    Dec 23, 2014
    We have chickens and would like to add a couple duck… We have never had ducks but people keep talking about how much better than chickens they are. So need some help. Looking for a duck that is the following:
    1. Doesn't fly. Is that possible? We live in the city and can't have our ducks all over the place.
    2. Quite. Don't want a breed that is know to be loud. No louder than chickens anyways.
    3. Doesn't need water to swim in. I am sure there will be a kiddie pool or something for them but, I don't want to have to offer a pool to swim in all the time. More like a treat.
    4. Friendly. The ducks would run with the chickens and i have been known to want to pick up and pet my chickens… It would be nice to have the same kind of relationship with the ducks.

    Are these unreasonable request for a duck owner?

  2. mommaford09

    mommaford09 In the Brooder

    Jul 3, 2014
    I am in the process of getting ducks so I am not claiming to know all, but my neighbor has ducks. I think they are Pekins. They do not fly bc of how heavy they are and really I only hear them a few times a day. Not all the time. But ducks do need a source of water to swim in when they want. I have heard if you hatch ducks then they will be very friendly, but if you have a good relationship with your chickens where they let you pick them up then do the same with the ducklings and I am sure they will be the same.

    Good Luck!
    1 person likes this.
  3. needlessjunk

    needlessjunk Crowing

    May 19, 2014
    Georgetown, TX
    Yes that is a bit unreasonable if you want ducks. Female ducks are louder than chicken Nothing terrible but they are louder, not as loud as a rooster though. Males are quiet but aren't a good idea if you already have chickens. Muscovies are quiet but they can fly. Most domestic ducks cannot fly unless you get smaller ducks.

    While ducks don't "need" water to swim in they do need to be able to dunk their heads and be able to clean out their nares. Ducks love water and it seems kinda mean to not give it to them if weather allows it. Ducks also need the water to clean off and bathe in order to stay water proof and warm. So even those who live in freezing area will still put out water pan to clean in when they can.

    Ducks can be friendly if you hand raise them and spend a lot of time with them. They will never be like dogs though and don't expect them to seek out love. Mine are friendly and they come when called and love their treats. They don't really care to be petted but will deal with it and with being held. I spent hours with them for the first few weeks to get them this tame. I had 2 males before and they were friendly and would come when called AF eat out of my hand but that was it. You can tell I didn't spend much time with them when they were younger. Around 5 months they started to come around and we gained their trust.

    What makes you want ducks? I love mine and think they are so much cooler than chickens. Not to mention they are much easier on my lawn and while they love mud I don't find it that bad. They have a kiddie pool and I don't think it is a chore because it makes them so happy.
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2015
    1 person likes this.
  4. Bill1st

    Bill1st Chirping

    Dec 23, 2014
    I want ducks because I think they are cool, want to add something different to the flock before the mature and raise them together and for the eggs. Thanks for the advice. We might try a couple and if it doesn't work out for some reason, move them to a friends farm where there are other ducks and animals.

  5. dandar

    dandar In the Brooder

    Apr 24, 2014
    central nebraska
    I have a pair of blue swedish ducks and they free range with 4 chickens during the day and then they all sleep together in an 8'x12' shed at night..they all get along very well. my male duck is kind of bossy to the chickens and make sure that they get to eat first (before the chickens) but the chickens have gotten used to it[​IMG] so they just wait their turn...I have a pond in my yard that the ducks have free access to but I have been told they don't need swimming water all the time..I would say that is a matter of preference. On cold days they stay in the shed together and I have not noticed any behavior problems between the ducks and chickens, and the ducks do fine if closed up for a couple days without swimming water. The female is noisier than the male unless something different in the yard then the male can become very loud to let everyone know something is different. I enjoy watching the ducks as much as the chickens and I have found that each has its own ducks eat the same as my chickens and I always treat them all with greens and fruits and they love warm oatmeal on cold mornings and warm gravy made from scratch...[​IMG] good luck and enjoy!!!
  6. dan26552

    dan26552 Free Ranging

    Oct 28, 2014
    Waiting for epicness.
    My Coop
    Well muscovys are very quite, unfortunately they are also very good at flying, you'd have to clip their wings. They don't need water to swim in but they do need to be able to dunk they're head under water.
  7. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Crowing

    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    1. There are many that do but usually those are on the louder side of the spectrum.

    2. Quiet? the top award goes to Muscovy, that said they do fly and very well, usually not the drakes but the females do. That said all ducks can have wings clipped to stop this, so that shouldn't be a deciding factor IMO.

    3. ALL ducks need to be able to swim/bathe at some point they definitely don't need ponds, or rivers or fancy set-ups but they not only need water deep enough to clean their nares and eyes but water to keep feathers in top condition and keep parasites at bay. Basically ducks bathing are like chickens dust bathing, it is best if they do... it's not a treat more a part of keeping them in top shape and health.

    4. Most ducks can be friendly, that said it'll vary.. personally ducks aren't big fans of being picked up, they are prey animals and being confined like that makes them nervous of coarse some are more people Oriented and don't mind, i can if need to be handle all ducks here for medical care or routine exam but prefer not to generally.

    While i run both here i don't actually house mine together, ducks are wet and messy, chickens roost and like dry places... some of mine do mingle as i free range most the birds but i like to tailor the living arrangements more specifically to the birds, it also lessens conflicts as they have much different habits and pecking orders.

    Metzer farms has a good site for ducks and gives a breakdown on info for breeds, you need to decide what you want from ducks.. some are dual purpose, some lay well(better than chickens in some cases) and the sizing ...
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2015

  8. Bill1st

    Bill1st Chirping

    Dec 23, 2014
    Thanks for all the advice people of Duckville!

    I will be picking up 2-3 cayuga's or welsh harlequin's come early may. I think the timing is best so that the chicks (right now only 3 weeks old) and ducks reach nearly full size at the same time (factoring the execrated growth of ducks compared to chickens). We will be setting up a 100 gal water tank with a drain for the ducks and using a different coop for them (we have a A-frame chicken coop that i think will be great for them once we pull out the roosting bar). We will let the ducks and chickens mingle during the day when we are at home otherwise they will have a fenced gate between their areas. I plan on planting so veggies and flowers at the base of the water tank that we are getting for the ducks so that we empty it, it will feed and water the garden at the base. I am thinking squash and lavender.
  9. pigcoon

    pigcoon Songster

    Apr 22, 2009
    Curious how people manage the baby pool/swimming issue in the winter with ducks? I'm in a harsh winter climate. My chickens have a heater base under their water, but that wouldn't work for something as large as a baby pool. How do you give access to water for ducks in the dead of winter?

  10. kyexotics

    kyexotics Songster

    Sep 26, 2014
    They just freeze over at some point...I try to break the water up as much as possible, but when it's subfreezing for extended periods of time, as with this winter, it's impossible to stay ahead of it...However, overall, they were accessible more than they weren't and when they aren't, they always have FRESH water buckets we fill every morning and night for them...

    I also got to comment on city ordinances(not necessarily this one), it makes me laugh how people allow city councils to say you can't have a rooster because of the noise yet you can have a incessantly barking dog and non-stop emergency sirens...If polled, I think people would rather hear the occasional rooster crowing ,maybe make them feel like they don't live in a concrete jungle for a moment...Doesn't it seem weird, barking and endless sirens are ok, but an occasional crow, can't have that, really?...Not saying, just saying...
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2015

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