How easy is it to keep ducks?

Hedwig

In the Brooder
7 Years
Aug 17, 2012
66
3
33
Massachusetts
I have had chickens for a few years now and have always seen ducks around at the fairs, stores, friends etc. I was wondering how hard are ducks to take care of? What are their eggs like?
 

Learningstill

Songster
6 Years
Jun 10, 2013
494
73
121
We enjoy their eggs much more than chickens. They are richer in flavor, less slimy, and they stay good longer. They are better for baking. They also are alkaline which helps fight cancer while chicken eggs are acidic. Many people with allergies to chicken eggs can have duck eggs. Some breeds of duck are prolific layers.

The duck eggs are usually more dirty when you collect. They are harder to crack open. Some people are Weirded out by the thought of eating a duck egg or it's thick shell.
 

whiteybird

Songster
7 Years
Feb 16, 2013
136
5
114
Sarasota, FL
I'm not the best person to answer this, as the first three ducks I've owned all died within four months - one of disease, another by a hawk, and the last by a raccoon - and of the three ducklings I have now, one is sickly. But in my opinion, chickens are easier than ducks.

All of our ducks have been Pekins and they appear to be very sweet, seemingly more emotional than our BO, EE, or RIR chickens. But I don't think they are as on top of their game as chickens are when it comes to survival...the 'sitting duck' phrase for a target definitely seems to apply.

Eggs are delicious. Fattier than chicken eggs so they're more flavorful. Ours were slightly smaller than our BO and RIR eggs. She laid them all over the yard though so it was like an easter egg hunt every day.
 

TLWR

Crowing
9 Years
Jul 10, 2010
2,879
254
254
southern AL
I think chicks are a bit easier to brood just due to water management.

If you ask DH, he says the chickens are easier than the ducks.
It takes about 30 seconds to hose out the the duck house and about 19 seconds to clean out the chicken house each morning.

My chickens do put themselves to bed 99% of the time.
The ducks put themselves to bed about 15% of the time lately.

Other than having to herd 5 ducks that didn't want to go to bed last night in the middle of a monsoon (8" of rain last night) - The yard was flooded with at least 3" of water and the rivers/lakes we get were deeper. Took forever to get them to bed all during some crazy thunder and lightening going on. Yeah, fun. Chickens were in bed waiting for the door to be closed.
I don't really feel there is much difference in the effort required for either as adults.
 

Shallon

In the Brooder
5 Years
Mar 30, 2014
61
3
43
My mother in law has said that the ducks poo is messier and they poo more. Is that true?
 

whiteybird

Songster
7 Years
Feb 16, 2013
136
5
114
Sarasota, FL
Good question, and I don't know the answer to that, but seeing as duckings grow faster than chicks, I'd say yes, they poop more. There is more poo in each deposit than with chicks I think.
 

Learningstill

Songster
6 Years
Jun 10, 2013
494
73
121
I am not sure if they poop more, but if they are in a big enough space you should not have a problem. They are not as coop desiring as chickens, so they tend to stay outside more.
 
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