Muscovy drakes and mallard ducklings

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by desertdarlene, Dec 3, 2010.

  1. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have a question about grown muscovy drakes and other ducks' ducklings. If they are in a large, open area with a lot of mallards with ducklings, will they attack and kill the mallard ducklings? Or, are they like other strange ducks who might nip at the unrelated babies if they get too close, but otherwise ignore them? I know that muscovies can sometimes eat things like good-sized frogs and even mice, so I wonder if they will seek out baby mallards, too.

    Just wondering. I haven't seen Tom ever be mean to a duckling, but he hung out with the big ducks and geese and most of the duck mamas stayed away from them. And, two little ducklings swam right past him once or twice with no issues, but he doesn't see all that well.

    ETA: I know I'm a worry-wort.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2010
  2. Omniskies

    Omniskies Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've never had a problem with muscovies going after chicks or ducklings. We have had bantam Cochins out here with their own clutches without an issue.

    With that being said, we free range and at night the mothers go into pens separate from the rest of the birds, so we don't have issues at night. And with free ranging, the muscovies tend to form their own giant flock (or flocks) and migrate out away from where the chickens and other ducks forage, so that self-segregating behavior may be what is keeping everyone safe and sound. I have read many, many things about muscovies happily wolfing down anything that will fit in their mouth - which would include young ducklings.

    "It hasn't happened to me" may not be a good enough reason to relax your guard.
     
  3. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That's good that your drakes are no problem. I just love that old drake at the lake so much, I would hate to think that he might be snacking on the little mallards I also love to see. There's enough herons, gulls, hawks, cats, foxes and coyotes to worry about, I don't want my favorite duck to be something I need to think about in that regards, too. I would worry about him with little baby killdeer, but I think mom and dad killdeer would take care of him and protect their chicks (you should have seen the baby killdeer running around in between the mallards, no issue with them at all). Also, they are so camouflaged, I don't think he would be aware that they're there to begin with.

    I think most of the mamas keep their babies away from him and the bigger ducks.

    I was mostly curious. I guess there's always something to worry about.
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2010
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Once upon a time, life didn't feel normal unless I was worrying about something. Gave that up! It was counterproductive. Snapping turtles, small hawks, herons, gulls, snakes, etc. will be far more dangerous to ducklings. Since you can't control them, I recommend not worrying.[​IMG]
     
  5. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yeah, I think I was just having anxiety last night. Tom is actually a very good drake and keeps to himself. I think I should worry more about the herons.
     

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