I want ducks.... sooooo many questions

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by flowerchicks, Aug 19, 2011.

  1. flowerchicks

    flowerchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    540
    6
    133
    Aug 18, 2009
    n. california
    I really want to get a couple ducks, but after researching, can't decide which breed is the quietest and tamest. I prefer a smaller size, and wanted call ducks until I heard they were so loud. Is that why they're called "call" ducks? How loud are wood ducks? Teal ducks? I have sooooo many duck questions, so please, bear with me.

    1. Why are muscovies illegal now? They are supposed to be the quietest.

    2. What are the main differences (besides water) between ducks and chickens?

    3. What kind of health issues do they have? I saw on another post that bird seed will make them sick, what about BOSS? We feed that to the wild birds/squirrels, and the chickens love it.

    4. Do hatched ducks "bond" to people better than purchased duckling? What about getting an older duckling or a full grown pair?

    5. What time of year do you recommend getting them? Is it too late in the year to get ducklings?

    6. Should I get a pair? I don't want noisy ducks, and I have heard that the females are noisy. Should I get 2 or 3 males and no female? Do they need a mate?

    7. I would be putting a kiddie pool, or a plastic garden pond, in my chicken run area (it is about 50' x 50') and my ducks would be hanging with the chickens. Is that ok? I would make a separate duck house for the ducks to sleep in at night.

    8. Do ducks need grass? I don't have any, just dirt and leaves.

    9. If I used one of my broody hens to hatch a duck egg, would they accept the duckling as one of their own? If they did, would this help the chickens to accept the ducks in their area, or would they do that anyway. (I have no roosters)

    10. I know the ducks (and ducklings) eat different food from the chickens, how could I separate their food? I was thinking of putting it in their "house".

    11. Will the ducks "roost" at night on their own, or will they need to be put in their duck house?

    12. I have a 6ft wooden fence, will they try to fly away?

    Sorry for so many questions, I have searched the forum for the answers and haven't had much luck. Thanks [​IMG]
     
  2. kikidee

    kikidee Chillin' With My Peeps

    315
    2
    101
    May 30, 2011
    San Clemente
    I recommend cayugas. I have two almost 6 week old drakes and I love them :) They aren't too loud and I heard they are one of the most quiet. (drakes are also supposed to be more quiet than females) They are in the medium class and for what I have heard can be around 7 lbs. They are the only ducks I have ever had, so you might want some other opinions [​IMG] good luck
     
  3. flowerchicks

    flowerchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    540
    6
    133
    Aug 18, 2009
    n. california
    I think cayugas are very pretty [​IMG] are the females loud?
     
  4. kikidee

    kikidee Chillin' With My Peeps

    315
    2
    101
    May 30, 2011
    San Clemente
    Quote:[​IMG] I honestly can't say, I literally have only had my two baby drakes and don't plan on getting more ducks until I am older and have my own house. I would assume so, as a description I once read said that cayugas in general were quiet, but you might wanna ask around. I also heard muscovies were the quietest but they fly and have talons.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2011
  5. DUCKGIRL89

    DUCKGIRL89 Chillin' With My Peeps

    7,176
    10
    241
    Apr 28, 2011
    TN
    Wow lost of qeustions, and no prob.
    Ducks are much fatter than chickens
    I dont know much about sicknesses either, I am farley new as well, I have only had mine for 5 months.
    It doesnt matter hatched on the farm or buying babbies, as long as you play/spend time with them.
    No not to late yet, if you want some I would get them soon. I have some new duckies coming at the end of the month.
    I heard welsh harlequins arent that noisy (thats what im getting they look awesome!)
    Kiddie pool sounds good to me. And yes duck and chickens may be together, mine are all the time.
    They should have grass but its ok if they dont. Just give em extra feed.
    Yes chickens wiil hatch duck eggs and raise them as thier own.
    No need to separate food. If doesnt matter the ducks will get the chickens, and the chickens will get the ducks.
    No ducks do not roost. And if they learn they will go in everynight.
    Non wild ducks dont fly, and no they cant get that far off the ground.
    Hope this helps!
     
  6. Kaelinstorm

    Kaelinstorm Chillin' With My Peeps

    386
    0
    99
    May 17, 2011
    Lampasas
    1. Why are muscovies illegal now? This I dont know... I own a Khaki Campbell drake, a magpie, a cayuga and a Khaki/Magpie cross. I had a Pekin - Pekins are probably the loudest. The others arent so bad but my cayuga is definitely quieter than Maggie...

    2. What are the main differences (besides water) between ducks and chickens? Not much really... you raise them much the same (same feed really) You cant feed ducklings medicated chick feed though... its bad for them. Ducks have no sphincter muscles so they poop anywhere and everywhere... you have to do water changes often if you dont have a standing or hanging waterer... I water mine through two kiddie pools and change the water every day to every other day.

    3. What kind of health issues do they have? I saw on another post that bird seed will make them sick, what about BOSS? Ok Im stumped on what BOSS is... but I switch between feeding mine cracked corn (THEY LOVE THIS) and hen scratch or crumble. I havent really had a health issue with mine but when Kiwi (Khaki) was little she started getting angelwing which I think was from the food... and I wasnt giving Sav-A-Chick... now I do that when they are young anytime I get a new baby. I had to bandage her wings against her body for a bit... no big deal

    4. Do hatched ducks "bond" to people better than purchased duckling? What about getting an older duckling or a full grown pair? Young ducklings in general will have a period of time where they will imprint on you... this is tricky... I would suggest reading this Full grown pairs probably wont bond as hard and unless they came from someone who had tamed them they probably wont want much to do with you. But I had mine from babies and didnt want a hard imprint so none of them want much to do with me anyway LOL

    5. What time of year do you recommend getting them? Is it too late in the year to get ducklings? I dont think its too late. I think during winter would not be so good but usually Spring is a good bet...

    6. Should I get a pair? I don't want noisy ducks, and I have heard that the females are noisy. Should I get 2 or 3 males and no female? Do they need a mate? YES! Ducks get lonely if by themselves. My pekin Howard (a girl) was pretty lonely and bonded to a chicken I had. She was really sad when Breakfast (The Buff Orp) got eatten by a Possum.. Females do tend to "talk" more but like I said I know at least my Cayuga is pretty quiet (about as quiet as my drake) No they do not need to mate but be sure you do not have more males than females... they will mate her to bits... sad thing indeed..

    7. I would be putting a kiddie pool, or a plastic garden pond, in my chicken run area (it is about 50' x 50') and my ducks would be hanging with the chickens. Is that ok? I would make a separate duck house for the ducks to sleep in at night. My ducks are in the same area as my chicken coop and they all drink from those kiddie pools. My ducks also have no interest in a house. That could just be mine... now when they went broody my cayuga went in the coop where I had left a rubbermaid with hay in it and she used that (Id once cut a door in it thinking they would use it but they never did, so I just stored hay in it - well when she went broody she took interest) but some people have had success with duck houses... mine just prefer the ground. Though they will want a place to lay their eggs (once they start understanding that they are laying them... in the beginning it wasnt weird for me to find an egg or two at the bottom of the kiddie pool LOL)

    8. Do ducks need grass? I don't have any, just dirt and leaves. LOL They dont need it... and if you had it, they would eat it anyway! Their favourite food is young grass shoots LOL

    9. If I used one of my broody hens to hatch a duck egg, would they accept the duckling as one of their own? If they did, would this help the chickens to accept the ducks in their area, or would they do that anyway. (I have no roosters) I honestly dont know... never tried but like I said mine are in the same area. I just did a flock integration like I do with all my newbies... I would let them in the same area supervised for more time and would have the newbies in a cage/enclosure where the chickens could see them but not harm them... then eventually I let em all loose... [​IMG] No problems and I introduced mine when I only had one roo and hes typically a territorial meanie

    10. I know the ducks (and ducklings) eat different food from the chickens, how could I separate their food? I was thinking of putting it in their "house". I feed mine the same feed... and I just throw it on the ground. Just make sure your duckies have access to water while they eat... food can get stuck and they will choke if there is no water to help wash it down.

    11. Will the ducks "roost" at night on their own, or will they need to be put in their duck house? Like I said I dont have a duck house... so I dont know

    12. I have a 6ft wooden fence, will they try to fly away? Most domesticated breeds are too body heavy to fly. Now there are some, such as a Mallard, that still have the ability to fly Ive heard females of the fliers are less likely to leave but the males will if they wish to go in search of a mate. But of the "non-flyers", mine cant seem to get over a 4 ft chicken wire fence...


    Im no pro either but just telling you what I have learned from MY flock (I had my first duck Howard about 3 1/2 years ago - poor girl died this summer. She got caught in a tarp and choked [​IMG] and my other three adults are about a year and a half. Little Ming-Ming the Khaki-Magpie is a little over a month old)
     
  7. flowerchicks

    flowerchicks Chillin' With My Peeps

    540
    6
    133
    Aug 18, 2009
    n. california
    So, I have looked into cayugas and welsh harlequins, and I like them both. What about Black East Indie and Silky Ducks, does anybody have those and can tell me if they are very loud.
     
  8. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

    22,983
    1,953
    471
    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I looked up BOSS, as someone had mentioned it on another topic. In the source I found it stands for black oil sunflower seeds. That's all I know. I don't feed my ducks seeds, though they find some while they're foraging - mostly grass seeds.
     
  9. jerseygirl1

    jerseygirl1 Chillin' With My Peeps

    4,497
    16
    246
    Jun 20, 2009
    Orange County, NY
    I had muscovies, hated them - now I have 6 calls and absolutely ADORE them - I recommend calls
     
  10. easttxchick

    easttxchick Lone Star Call Ducks

    8,427
    15
    263
    Aug 3, 2009
    Quote:I agree 100% with this. Calls are wonderful, adorable, BUT unbelievably loud little critters(the hens anyway). If noise isn't an issue(though it sounds like it may be), Calls all the way.
    I also LOVE my Mallards.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by