I can't resist!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by LizGled628, Jul 31, 2010.

  1. LizGled628

    LizGled628 Chirping

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    My husband and I have six seven-week-old chicks that we absolutely adore. We're talking about getting another batch in the spring, and we want to add some ducklings to the order. I'm a baker, and I've heard that duck eggs are even better for baking than chicken eggs (imagine the cakes! cookies! creme anglaise!).

    Do you guys have any suggestions of breeds that would integrate well with chickens? We do not have a water source near by (well, the ocean is a ten minute walk, I sure hope they don't hang out there!), so we would be providing them a pool/artificial pond of sorts. Can they live with the chickens, or do they need their own coop? Our coop is 6' x 8' with three attached nesting boxes. We will probably have no more than ten chickens living in there at one time, and they have a huge attached run (we also let them free range when we are able to keep an eye out).

    Thanks in advance for the help. I love stalking the duck forum and checking out all your adorable pics!
     
  2. GrumpyOldMan

    GrumpyOldMan Chirping

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    Can’t give you advise on what to get but I can tell you that our two ducks and two chickens are inseparable. They were raise together from chicks and ducklings and they do everything together. Well, the chickens don’t swim in the pool but if a duck(s) is in the pool the chickens and other duck are right next to pool pecking around on the ground. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  3. LizGled628

    LizGled628 Chirping

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    Awwww!!! That is so cute! Do you have the pool in the pen with the chickens? I was thinking of attaching a seperate run for the ducks with a pool, so that the chickens don't try to drink the poopy water.
     
  4. LizGled628

    LizGled628 Chirping

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    Duh, I just reread your post. Obviously the pool is in with the chickens. Any problems keeping your coop dry/clean?
     
  5. Denninmi

    Denninmi Songster

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    Quote:Yes, yes, yes. I prefer my duck eggs for baking by far. They are richer in flavor, denser whites, more rich, deeper orange yolks. Once you try them for applications that are dependent upon a lot of volume or flavor from eggs (chiffon cake, quiches being good examples) you will be addicted.

    Quote:Um, I'd be kind of leery of keeping ducks in with chickens in that small of an enclosure only for hygiene reasons for both species. Ducks are very messy and have very wet manure that smears all over and tracks. In a large enclosure or free ranging it wouldn't be a problem, but I wouldn't personally be comfortable mixing them in this situation, as each will be getting in the other's mess when locked in at night. Could you provide a separate duck coop/house for the ducks at night and just use the same enclosure?

    As far as water goes, ducks love a pool but it's not necessary as long as they have adequate fresh drinking water from a bucket or similar.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  6. LizGled628

    LizGled628 Chirping

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    Thanks for the advice! Do ducks need the same amount of space as chickens (4 sq feet?)? If so, maybe I can get a nice dog house or rabbit hutch and revamp it for duck living, then attach it to the run. I only want two, for now anyways [​IMG]

    What about something like this? We'd add ventilation and a door, of course.

    http://providence.craigslist.org/for/1859578131.html
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  7. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    That looks huge. I think it will be perfect for two ducks. You may be able to put a hardware cloth covered door up on the porch area and use hardware cloth to enclose the rest. That way you can keep the food and water out there and they can sleep inside. Simply add a dog door for them to go inside.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2010
  8. jrobertson

    jrobertson Robertson's Rare Poultry

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    i agree with denninmi about the hygiene issue. the dog house looks fine for two ducks and if you want several eggs for baking, khaki campbells or runners would be my recommendation.
     
  9. LizGled628

    LizGled628 Chirping

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    Thanks everyone! I'm a pastry student during the year, so we aren't going to order them until next spring, when they have my full attention. But I really like to plan ahead, anticipate costs, and prepare. Thanks a ton!
     
  10. Parrotchick

    Parrotchick Songster

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    One thing you may need to be careful of is drakes that show amorous interest in chickens. A drake could really hurt or even kill a chicken. My Muscovy drake was raised with chickens his same age. He was kind of their protector, but when he got big he started trying to mount my big Cornish X hens. I separated them and he doesn't try that anymore, but he always wants to hang out with the chickens and even tries to fight the head rooster. He thinks HE'S a rooster. And he usually wins because he's bigger and he holds onto the rooster's hackles super tight with his bill. I have to pull him off.

    My Pekins are no problem with the chickens. Maybe since they were raised with other ducks, they don't have the identity issues my Muscovy does. (Though the Pekin drake is sure ruthless with the duckie hens).

    Just keep an eye out to make sure ducks only try to mate with other ducks.
     

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