1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Ducks compared to chickens, your opinion?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by fowlsessed, Jan 21, 2013.

  1. fowlsessed

    fowlsessed Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,531
    48
    164
    Nov 16, 2011
    east Tennessee
    How do you think ducks compare to chickens as far as being "dumb"/"smart", their personality, and just in general? I asked the same question on the turkey thread and got some very interesting and unexpected replies. Just wondering what you duck people have to say?
    Thanks,
     
  2. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

    7,538
    344
    311
    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    Well i don't think chickens are dumb, i think they are simple animals and no i don't consider that the same thing lol Ducks are too, they want food/water, shelter and like to forage and have company of their own kind.

    I have both i don't think one is Superior in intelligence they both offer different pros/cons however.... in the end they both hold good value to the farm ime.
     
  3. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

    12,308
    170
    323
    Sep 7, 2009
    Florida - Space Coast
    Our ducks far out smart the chickens we have on every level. The ducks learn routine here, will walk through two-three open gates and take themselves to their daytime yards, and return to their stalls at night. They will goto THEIR stall, not just anywhere when it is time to goto bed at night. They herd well (chickens dont herd at all).


    Around here the intelligence is:

    1. Goose
    2. Duck
    3. Chicken
    4. Guinea fowl
     
  4. fowlsessed

    fowlsessed Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,531
    48
    164
    Nov 16, 2011
    east Tennessee
    Thanks for the replies. Interesting.
     
  5. myfinefeatheredfriends

    myfinefeatheredfriends Chillin' With My Peeps

    845
    18
    131
    Mar 1, 2011
    Ohio
    I have both. My hobby originally started with chickens so I've had more of them but I'd like to make the transition to ducks more than chickens. Why? I've had less trouble with ailments with ducks, they don't require Marek's vaccination (really pointless to hatch chickens in my humble opinion if you don't plan to vaccinate them otherwise they won't live very long), to me they seem more feed efficient, the sight of a newborn duckling is beyond adorable, they are all weather hardy - heat, cold, wet - and their pecking order isn't as extreme as chickens. They have an absolute ball splashing around their pool in the summer while the chickens lay around panting. They don't dig or tear up the grass like chickens but they do "drill" the ground with their beaks and make mud - lots and lots of mud - you really have to not mind mud to raise ducks. Another con is they aren't as people loving as chickens are... ducks tend to stay to themselves so if you're looking for a lap pet, they aren't the best choice. That's all I can think of right now.
     
  6. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,215
    139
    243
    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    I have both. If I had to choose, I'd keep only ducks. I think they are smarter than chickens. Chickens are just kind of scatter brained. For instance, right now I have 15 hens, 3 roos. Two days ago, I lost one of my hens to a hawk. Some of my chickens just wander off on their own. Even though there are a number they can hang with. They go through or over the fence and I find them 2/3 of the way down the driveway (which goes through 2 acres) oblivious to everything. The ducks stay together. My drake will go back and get one of the girls if she doesn't follow along. With the hawk the other day, most of the chickens hunkered down in the bushes. Then the roos dashed for the coop about 2 hours later, leaving 6 of the hens. Silly birds. I think ducks are more comical and have more personality than chickens.
     
  7. fowlsessed

    fowlsessed Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,531
    48
    164
    Nov 16, 2011
    east Tennessee
    Interesting, thanks.
     
  8. ChristineR

    ChristineR Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,689
    12
    158
    Jun 15, 2011
    WA state
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2013
  9. fowlsessed

    fowlsessed Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,531
    48
    164
    Nov 16, 2011
    east Tennessee
    Thanks CR, good to hear what you had to say. As far as what I was expecting on the other thread, I was expecting more comparison, but it was turkeys over chickens 110%. lol
    Thanks,
     
  10. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

    7,538
    344
    311
    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    The thing is though, i think it's a difficult question it's almost like cat vs dog. Everyone has their preferences and that will cloud the answers. As i said there are definitely pro/cons to each, I started with ducks and still mainly have ducks, i only have 4 chickens, my girls are personable, gentle and soooooo bloody simple it's almost a joke. The ducks, are less predator prone well the breed that i keep is a call would likely be more at risk. I also think ducks are better foragers BUT the chickens are less work, eat less, make less mess and require less space.

    Mind you I think people's set-ups play a role as do the breeds they own and likely the quantity. I like having both and FWIW i was totally anti chicken but they turned me around lol I still wouldn't choose one over the other, as i said in my last post each is worthwhile but it really does depend on your own tolerances and expectations.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by