Getting first runners - I have questions!!

nbutlin

Hatching
6 Years
May 2, 2013
3
0
7
Austin, Texas
Getting a pair of Runners this Friday (from Fabulous Feathers Hatchery) - I have some questions for y'all. I don't know anyone personally who has Runners, which I know are different from other ducks. In the past I've only had a Pekin, and he was disabled, so it wasn't a typical 'duck' life.

  1. I've been told that Runners are 'skittish' and 'high energy' - is this your experience? We want to be able to interact with them, love on them, and establish a good bond with them. Do you find this to be possible with your Runners?
  2. I can either get two girls, or a boy/girl pair. I've been warned that perhaps a drake will become aggressive when his 'girl' starts to lay, but the breeder told me this isn't true with his runners. Do you find your drakes get aggressive when the girl matures?
  3. I also heard the drakes are aggressive maters and it's too much for the girl to be paired one-on-one with a drake - breeder recommended two girls to a drake, but that's getting to be too many for us. Do you find that one girl to one boy works fine, or is it to much for the girl?
  4. Most important decision for now: If we're only going to have 2 runners, should it be 2 girls or boy/girl pair?

We live in a normal-sized yard in the middle of Austin, Tx and we have a big coop with 15 chickens. We love our birds and we fell in love with ducks with our Pekin. We just want a happy, fun environment with the ducks too. Any advice you have specific to Runners would be appreciated!

Just joined today - this is my first post!!
Nancy
 

shicks0211

Songster
7 Years
May 7, 2012
272
18
101
Orlando Florida
Welcome aboard! I have runners along with several other types. I don't find them to be any more skittish than other breeds. They're inquisitive. My runners will come right up onto my deck and knock on the door with their beak if i'm not out to feed them at the normal time when i get home from work. Mine free range but they look for my car every day. They are friendly..and in my experience since i have a mixed flock the least agressive of the ones i have. khaki campbells, cuyogas and pekins being the pretty non aggressive as well. I'd say a pair would be fine..the male..may but not always chase the other animals away during mating season..but it's only for a monty or so..and i wouldn't call it aggressive..it's just quacking and flapping the wings and running them off really. ALL ducks..not just runners are aggressive breeders..the female never seems to want to and the male just chases her down ..in the water it almost looks like they'll drown her..I've seen mallards chase the female and when she takes flight knock her right out of the air to mate with her. Now, really, at least to me..whether you get two females ,or a male and a female, probably won't make a difference if it's going to be the only two you have, i think it will come to your noise tolerance. Males have a very soft whispery quack..and the females quack is very LOUD..so if you have two females..you'll hear them ..i can hear mine clear across the lake.
 

nbutlin

Hatching
6 Years
May 2, 2013
3
0
7
Austin, Texas
Thanks for your reply Shicks! That was very helpful. You are right - one reason we don't want 2 girls is because of the noise. Our Pekin was a boy, and we loved his soft raspy quack. The other reason not to get two girls is because the mail order hatcheries are going to make me wait 2 months, the local hatchery won't sell 2 girls without a drake (or he'd end up with all drakes), and other local sellers can't determine sex at all. I am hoping we have good luck with a sweet drake, and maybe end up with a duckie love story. We plan to spend a lot of time with the ducklings bonding and playing, so we hope they are comfortable with us and easy to handle later. I hope they come to my back door and knock on it also - I would LOVE that!

Thanks again. Hoping for more replies also to see what other experiences people are having with their Runners. Can't wait to see those babies!

Nancy
 

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