More questions.

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by MummyToTwins, Dec 14, 2011.

  1. MummyToTwins

    MummyToTwins Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks for the warm welcome!

    And also thanks for the advice. I didn’t realize that the Jumbo Pekins are prone to leg issues; that’s good to know. Will definitely aim to have like sizes now.

    I have another couple of questions though.

    Looking at Craigslist there are a few people selling eggs, ducklings and ducks even now. The price varies wildly though, from free or just a couple of dollars to $150 for a pair of white Pekins. What is a fair price for a nice, friendly healthy duck?

    Also, if we go the duckling route, how early can they be sexed? A flock of males would be interesting but not so good for egg production.

    Cheers.
     
  2. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    For a pair of nice pekins I wouldn't pay over 30. As for sexing they should have their voice changes by 4 - 6 weeks
     
  3. featherfinder

    featherfinder Runner Lover

    Eggs can vary depending on person. Duckling should be $3-$15 depending on quality and adults i will have to agree with Kevin. Alone i sell mine for $10-$15 depending on quality.
     
  4. MummyToTwins

    MummyToTwins Out Of The Brooder

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    Thanks. Now to find a breeder in MA.
     
  5. Dusky Beauty

    Dusky Beauty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    If I may plug Metzer Farms I highly recommend them for pet ducklings. I've found great personalized customer service, and above and beyond health guarantees. I ordered a few welsh harlies last year with some layer hybrids and lost several due to a failure to thrive over a period of weeks. I contacted them to let them know in case other people were having issues with that batch and John actually took it upon himself to send me replacements for birds I lost well after the "healthy chick guarantee" deadline. They really seem to care about their birds and their customers over there and I love supporting a business that runs that way.
    The site is even fun just to browse with lots of pictures and useful information about raising ducks and geese.
     
  6. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

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    $150 for a pair is for exhibition quality ducks. You could pay more than that for really top quality ducks.

    My advice is that you decide upon what breed you want and buy ducklings from a quality source in the spring. Some places will sell you sexed ducklings. However, this time of year, people are trying to get rid of mouths that eat, so you can usually get pet quality adult ducks for very little or even free. They will be mystery birds, most likely purchased from the feed store, health and breeding unknown. A few with temperament issues, although ducks generally don't have the same sort of problems with temperament as chickens can have.

    Really, it depends upon what you want the ducks for. A couple of free ducks will make nice yard ornaments. If you want ducks for a specific purpose, then purpose bred ducks are a better purchase in the long run.
     
  7. animalsRawesome

    animalsRawesome Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hatcheries sex them as day-olds. How much they are worth really depends on quality and the time of year. Right now I wouldn't pay more than $10 each, butt really you should be able to find them for less than that because people don't want to feed them over the winter. IMHO it is alot better to get some free ducks in the fall as long as they look healthy then wait to spring to buy them. Unless you are looking to do some showing, you really are better off geting ducks for free in the fall because people have already put alot of feed and time into them. Usually you can find birds that were easter presents and are just now starting to lay now anyway.
     
  8. duckdad

    duckdad Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Buying eggs IMO is a gamble....you never know what you;ve got until its YOURS. Call around to the local feed stores....there may be someone thats got a fresh hatch. Some even hatch a few themselves for sale. I know around here they stopped all shipments for several months because it was too hot but they started shipping again in Sept/Oct and I'm sure live birds are available. You can take day old birds no problem as long as you provide the heat, feed, water and some attention. They even swim at 1st day....just keep an eye on them...they can;t float well until they get feathers and they can drown when their down/fur gets soaked and weighs them down.They also get tired easily when swimming. First month you have to stay with them and only use shallow water for swim time. (2-3" deep) A daily swim in the sink helps keep the crusty-butt away and allows them to exercise. besides, they love it and are too much fun to watch. Mine all enjoy the shower massage....like a duck jaquzzi.

    Avg is $3 to $15 like others have said, for good quality common breed duck eggs. But, My last bird was $5 at several weeks of age. That was Oct.

    As far as sexing....physical sexing should be done the first day BEFORE the bird eats. Much easier without poo in the way.....
    Do some googling. You-Tube also has some stuff on ducks. There are videos and detailed instructions. Its not as bad as it looks...just be gentle. If you're unsure, then don;t.
    If you never saw the "Dirty Jobs" episode about a duck farm....the several people that did the sexing of thousands of birds each day sat at a long table and grabbed day old hatchlings out of big boxes and took a look, then TOSSED them into the appropiate box labeled Male or Female. All of a ducks (M&F) parts that every animal has are all contained inside whats called the "vent". The vent is a multi-purpose pouch or opening where all the organs hide. This is to keep the ducks underside as streamlined as possible so they are like a boat hull in the water. Very efficient and smooth when swimming. You have to gently squeeze around the vent as if trying to pop a pimple and the organs will come out (if male) or not, if female. But, its easy to hurt the baby if done too harshly. On a day old duckling its challanging just being able to SEE the vent...much less the microscopic organs hidden inside.
    The ducks not too excited about this either...
    A little traumatic for their first experience with humans but they get over it. Bug (my little girl) to this day still hates being held that way....(bottom up or on her back)
    The only other way of sexing is to wait....for sounds, females are much louder and chatter more. The coloring is next. See whats typical for your breed. There are clues on the beak as well...beak color, the tip and its shape. Sometimes the legs have different color on M-F. If you don;t sex the bird the first week, you have to wait. The older the bird gets the harder it is to sex one physically. And messy too...Like nasty silly string...

    BTW....tossing the ducklings in a box does'nt hurt them,....There is an old saying " ducklings don't break, they bounce". Thats true. I've never tossed a duck but I've had ducklings walk off tables, jump out of boxes and THUD on the floor...and they just get up and waddle away.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2011
  9. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Would you consider rescued Pekins?

    Many of them get abandoned and need homes.
     
  10. featherfinder

    featherfinder Runner Lover

    Quote:Very true. There is 2 in a rescue by me right now that need a home. Along with 4 other mix breeds.
     

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