I WANT DUCKS!- Total Newbie *EDIT GOT SOME DUCKLINGS!Yay!*

snowhorse

Pantry Brook Farm
10 Years
Jun 13, 2009
762
2
129
MA
Sooo, I have fallen head first into chickens and cant get over how darn cute baby ducks are!

I am working on buying a bator and would like to hatch my own ducks.

Does anyone have any suggestions on breed? And how many I should have?

I have a marsh, pond, and river that go thru the property that I will keep them on. And yes there are wild Mallards, Canadian Geese and Swans....will this be a problem?

I would like something friendly, not flighty, and is a good layer. Pretty colors never hurt
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Are ducks more expensive than chickens? And are keeping ducks and chickens on the same property usually an issue?

I like Runners, are they reasonable for what I am looking for?

I know I am rambling, but Im sure you guys wont mind answering my questions
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Bleenie

Wyan-DO's
10 Years
Jul 14, 2009
5,014
82
268
The Beautiful Pacific NW ,WA
Of course my first suggestion would be Muscovies. they're very sweet, friendly and easily tamed. if you hatch them yourself they are even sweeter...I have a girl that was incubator hatched and hand raised, she comes into the house if the door is open and "steals" dog food, lol. All my boys are even super friendly.

They are friendly, not flighty, pretty good layers (mine quit in Nov & started again in Jan!) & they come in a good variety of colors...they are also the best mother ducks! I have 2 already broody & 1 hen isn't even a year old!

Ducks can become more expensive than chickens because of how much they can eat BUT, if you will be free ranging, Muscovy are great forragers and mine dont eat much grain during spring, summer & fall. it shouldnt be bad if you only have a few too (i have 19!)

I keep my Muscovy & chickens together, they do just fine but the mommas will chase the other birds away from their nest when they are setting, nothing vicious though.

Wild birds can carry disease but i have never had problems with my ducks and the wild mallards or canadian geese here...the dang swans wont leave the neighbors field and visit ours though!! (they probably know i want to catch them, haha.


As far as other breeds go my old Buff & Pekin hens were very good layers, not sure about runners though. Good luck!!
 

Bleenie

Wyan-DO's
10 Years
Jul 14, 2009
5,014
82
268
The Beautiful Pacific NW ,WA
Aso, if the "mask" of Muscovies dont appeal to you there are some people that prefer to breed ducks with smaller caruncling(masks)..I prefer mine with small masks over the big lumpy ones.
 

snowhorse

Pantry Brook Farm
10 Years
Jun 13, 2009
762
2
129
MA
Do people on here sell duck eggs for hatching? Or am I better of finding a local breeder?


I am leaning towards Muscovies and Runners
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my1stchicks

Songster
11 Years
May 12, 2008
568
2
151
North FL
Yes some on here do sell eggs for hatching but if you can find a local breeder your always better off. Muscovy eggs, from what I've read, can be hard to hatch.
 

gryeyes

Covered in Pet Hair & Feathers
10 Years
Sep 22, 2009
15,506
422
358
My slice of heaven in Somerset, CA
I picked up two Cayuga ducklings, straight run, from my favorite feed store, along with two Welsummer chicks, 1 Barred Rock, and 1 Rhode Island Red.

I had read that Cayuga ducks were one of the quiet(er) breeds. And the all black color just appealed to me. The ducklings are adorable, black feet, legs, beaks, eyes, fuzz.

I wonder how I will tell if I have ducks or drakes?
 

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