Muscovy ducks advice/info please

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Sweetlilbaby, Dec 22, 2012.

  1. Sweetlilbaby

    Sweetlilbaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am trying to buy some muscovy ducks. First try failed. :( Second try happening after x-mas.
    I'm trying to purchase 2 female and one male. That wont be to few females will it?
    Are their eggs easy to incubate? Or is it better to have them under a broody hen or broody duck?
    Can they fly? If so how tall of fence will i need for their free range time? Are they friendly?

    I heard males can get 20 lbs, is that true? I was thinking of hatching some from what I get and using males as food for my dogs (butchered and all that wont feed live I'm not cruel), and then sell female ducklings. How much are they worth? I don't want to over pay for them either.
    Any info you can give me will be great especially if it's first hand experience. I've read a lot online but different sites have different info about them. Some controdicts. So now I'd rather hear from people that own this breed of duck.

    Will they be okay being with my chickens or will i need to build a second pen?
    Are they friendly?
    do they prefer deep or shallow swimming areas?
     
  2. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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  3. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    A trio may work depends, i have 10 total now, 2 are drakes 8 are ducks so it's 1:4.

    I too have understood, incubation is tricky they are best duck raised, i had two nests this year raised by my ducks.

    The ducks are excellent fliers, younger drakes can too. Now my two mature drakes? no, the one could up till a few months ago but has since bulked out and doesn't.

    I have a 5ft fence around my flock and the girls fly right out BUT i choose to do this everyone's situation is different you have to decide what yours is.

    I think they are personable but again depends on the duck and a bit on how they are raised. I also am not one to encourage lap ducks so this will vary.

    20lbs? that seems a bit large, they are BIG as drakes.. my one guy is easily 12+lbs not sure on the other but 10+ would be reasonable. The girls are not that big, more of a petite package.

    How much are they worth? region will dictate pricing, i sold all my coloured excess drakes this fall for 10$ a piece. Females i would charge more for as they are worth more in general.

    I don't keep my Muscovy with my chickens as i don't want any drake mating my chickens, i know some do but that is a risk i am not willing to take.

    I use kiddy pools for mine, they love to swim/dive with the exception of my oldest, biggest drake he does not like too. lol but the rest of my birds always have, i have had over 20 of Muscovy since i began into ducks. They are the only breed i own, we use them for pest control and eggs.
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2012
  4. PlumTuckered

    PlumTuckered Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 27, 2007
    Arkansas
    I've only had luck hatching Muscovy eggs in the house 1 time. You get far better results putting the eggs under a broody girl. I have 5 grown Muscovies (1 Drake and 4 Hens) and 4 Muscovy Ducklings (looks like 3 females and 1 male). One of my grown girls is on a nest of eggs right now, she's always going broody on me LOL

    My ducks have their own pen with 2 houses and a highrise set of nesting boxes in it. My grown Muscovies only use the houses to lay eggs or hatch babies in, they sleep in the trees once they can fly. My non flying ducks and ducklings sleep in the houses. My ducks do go into the chicken pen and visit now and then, they'll even lay an egg in the hen house now and then.

    I've never seen a 20 lb Drake but I did see a 16 lb Drake at a Poultry show last year, he was gorgeous but HUGE!

    My ducks have a kiddie pool and a big pond but my Muscovies prefer the water for bathing and now and then for a swim and to play, most of the time they spend walking around the yards and pasture looking for goodies to eat.

    I have put duck eggs under a broody Chicken and had a successful hatch, just make sure they are hatched out in a place that you can gather the ducklings when you need to move them to the duck pen. We built a smaller coop in our chicken yard that we call the Nursery/Hospital...we use it for sick/injured birds and for broody chickens. It's fully enclosed with an indoor and outdoor section.

    Michelle
     
  5. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Great advice so far.
    I clipped a wing on mine after their flight feathers grew in. Typically, they would stay in a 4' fence but they can climb well and could get over a high fence if frightened.

    They are typically VERY good broodies and moms. They also will set on a large number (usually) of eggs. Its just easier to let mom do the work.

    I do have to say, I wouldn't waste muscovy meat on my dogs and I love my dogs. The meat is DELICIOUS!!! But to each his own. [​IMG]

    Good luck with your muscovy adventure (once it starts). I really love mine.
     
  6. Sweetlilbaby

    Sweetlilbaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    weird here everyone wants more for males then they do females.
     
  7. Sweetlilbaby

    Sweetlilbaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i plan in the future to get more ducks. but starting out I can only afford the three. Also for my broody hen I keep her in the garage near the window (for light) in a great dane sized plastic dog crate. Babies wont fit out and it keeps them very contained. :) i have a hen that is only 6 months old that already has gone broody on me So i think she'll be my new incubator. Anytime an egg is left in a nest over night she gets on it and wont move.
     
  8. Sweetlilbaby

    Sweetlilbaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    will clipping the ducks wings keep them from flying out or is it better to make a duck tractor?
    Same day that I'm picking up the ducks i'm going to go buy some PVC pipe and connectors to make a triangle "tractor" that has a square base of 10x10 is that big enough for something to be moved daily and would only be their daytime area. At night they'll be put with my chickens in their 27 by 10 ft pen (half of that is fully inclosed/covered with roosts at various heights with a heat lamp)
    I am making a chicken/duck tractor either way for when the ducks hit breeding season and to move them to where i want to plant a garden to allow them to fertilize and remove bugs/slugs.

    will 10ft by 10ft be big enough for 3? Will i need to expand it larger?
     
  9. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Chicken Obsessed Premium Member

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    Yes clipping wings should prevent them from flying out of the area.

    It should be big enough for during the day but ducks are notorious for destroying the area the tractors covers in a very short time.
     
  10. Sweetlilbaby

    Sweetlilbaby Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do they do more or less damage then chickens do? and I plan to use the tractor for under my trees where we have some BAD ant problems, weeds and grass i want removed.... Plus I have some flower gardens out front that my plants died but weeds are doing great [​IMG]
    I plan to move the tractor around on a daily basis during mating season.
    BTW when/how long is mating season for ducks?
     

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