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 vs chickens, or ducks AND chickens?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by trcarlton, Jun 22, 2012.

  1. trcarlton

    trcarlton Out Of The Brooder

    21
    1
    24
    Mar 25, 2010
    I have chickens and rabbits, but have heard that ducks are more efficient keepers than chickens. Are ducks noisier than chickens (my hens are godawful loud most of the time, but I don't want to piss off neighbors or hubby TOO much)? What do you guys think? I have a small fenced yard to keep them all in (rabbits in raised hutches, chickens in a small coop), and I recently started selling the chicken eggs but they can't keep up with demand (I only have 5 laying hens and some chicks right now). I have heard that Khaki Campbells are high producers, and excellent foragers...what are the pros and cons of duck ownership? Should I consider replacing my hens with ducks, or is it possible/beneficial to keep both hens and ducks together? Thank you!
     
  2. ducksinarow

    ducksinarow Chillin' With My Peeps

    458
    17
    121
    Mar 12, 2011
    I have Campbells. They are very good egg producers. I get an egg a day from each hen most of the year. Even mid winter we have enough eggs from the 3 hens. Have you ever ate a duck egg. It is a bit different. I like them for baking and quiche. They are also good scrambled, but I must say I like the taste of chicken eggs better. I would buy a few eggs before I switch birds. They are very good bug hunters and mine pretty much stay in my yard. The hens are loud when the quack.
     
  3. JimnTer

    JimnTer Out Of The Brooder

    84
    0
    29
    Feb 16, 2012
    I have all 3. I keep rabbits for meat. My chickens are currently layers only, but I am planning to change to dual purpose birds. I just got my ducks, I am keeping them for meat purposes. As far as selling eggs, duck eggs can bring more money if you can find people who want them, but a lot of people just want chicken eggs. As far as noise goes, all the birds are much quieter than either my my dogs or the neighbors, especially when they all get howling/ barking at the same time.I'm not sure why this last bit is in itallics. It wasn't intentional.
     
  4. trcarlton

    trcarlton Out Of The Brooder

    21
    1
    24
    Mar 25, 2010
    I've had duck eggs before, they were pretty darn tasty. My main concern is the level of noise, and how often. My hens are loud, often - very talkative when they're excited, which seems to be frequently throughout the day, and then when they lay an egg...>< So far no complaints from neighbors, though lol Our landlord is very accommodating, but draws the line at butchering chickens or rabbits, so the extra eggs are sold to regular customers, and the rabbits will be sold as pets. They both, of course, provide fabulous fertilizer, and the hens are excellent rototillers. I think my ideal would be to have a small flock of hens and a small flock (?) of ducks (females only for both), but I would need to find someone local to Lacey, WA that already has them so I can go visit and hear for myself, to gauge if they are more or equally noisy to my chickens...and then convince hubby ;) I think I just need acreage so I won't have to worry about neighbors, anyway, and then I can process my chickens/rabbits/ducks for meat, too :D Thank you for your input!
     
    1 person likes this.
  5. Nyowpotopop

    Nyowpotopop Chillin' With My Peeps

    127
    6
    71
    Jun 4, 2012
    N.E. Ohio
    Muscovy ducks can be pretty big but are quiet - quieter than chickens. However they're prone to being very broody and will start hiding thier eggs if you take them a lot to my understanding. They're best as butchering animals but certainly do lay lots of eggs each year. They're not as efficient as chickens since many chickens lay year-round and they only lay in warmer months. They also fly quite nicely though some of the males get too big to do so!

    Other ducks are mallard breeds so they're ALL pretty noisy. Girls are always louder than boys. Noise level of the particular ducks VS chickens depends on the individuals involved... Except for Call Ducks which (as the name implies) make very loud calls all the time. Some breeds of chickens are known for being very loud but none are known for being quiet... That comes down to the individual bird frankly.
     
  6. FireTigeris

    FireTigeris Tyger! Tyger! burning bright

    My ducks are more noisy than my chickens, even the rooster because they alarm more constantly...

    I have both in a single pen.

    (and ducks make more mess, but make up for that in personality- that is half the ducks as chickens, twice the mess)
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2012
  7. zooweemama

    zooweemama Chillin' With My Peeps

    My chickens are still chicks yet so I cannot compare. I have 14 ducks. 11 female (females are louder than males). And honestly the only time I hear them is if something startles them or scare them. Which is a few times a day- a hawk, my kids walking by them (not afraid they just get excited lol) and during meal times, first thing when we let them out of their coop and when we put them to bed are their noisiest times. Also I am their keeper- so they know my voice. I call them "hey babies! how are my babies!" and they start a ruckus. LOL But I trigger it when I talk to them in that special voice. rofl They CAN be loud but usually for a reason. Unlike dogs and boredom barking- my ducks do not the boredom or random quack. My quietest ducks are my Welsh Harlequins. Honestly they don't quack all that much. My Pekins are THE loudest and then my Buffs/Runners/Golden 300 ducks are pretty close. My Welshies are really quiet. My ducks won't start laying until September.

    I am doing ducks AND chickens so I have an overlap. In case my hens shut the egg gate during the winter- my ducks will keep laying. And I am hoping they will all molt at different times too. Selling/giving away my excess of both.
     
  8. FireTigeris

    FireTigeris Tyger! Tyger! burning bright

    There is a park next door to me that has kids at it all day- they are duck disturbing.

    And everytime the back door opens...
     
  9. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    7,531
    338
    293
    May 24, 2011
    On, Canada
    Well my chicks are just little BUT i have had ducks first and have so for over a year.. ducks win the messy award, the chickens are louder! of coarse all my ducks are Muscovy so perhaps a different breed would be more comparable.

    My ducks forage super well, around here my chickens would be a meal lol The water issue for ducks creates more work and there droppings are of more significance... i think both serve a purpose, that is why i have them both. [​IMG]
     
  10. FireTigeris

    FireTigeris Tyger! Tyger! burning bright

    Muscovies are very quiet, I wish I had some.

    Chickens break up the ground in gardens or lawns, ducks don't -
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by