new to ducks and I have some questions

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by chillybird, Jan 31, 2015.

  1. chillybird

    chillybird New Egg

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    I was thinking of getting some ducks, both for garden pest control and for eggs. heres my situation: I have neighbors near by who have kinda noisy dogs (only when they first see people after a couple minutes they calm down I think the poor things are just lonly and bored) and I'm on the corner lot, its not a busy road but loud trucks do go by now and then and there is a sidewalk seperating the yard from the road. The yard, is by the way, HUGE. its the second largest in the city limits so theres plenty of room for a little flock of ducks to waddle around comfortably and yes, we are aloud to have them. :)

    I did a little reading up, but I though hearing about peoples personal experiences might help with these questions too:

    I hear ducks are easier to keep than chicken, somewhat healthier in general, and are less destructive to yards/grass, is this true?
    I was thinking of getting Cayuga or Muscovy, are these:
    good egg layers?
    calm?
    friendly?
    I know muscovy are quackless they hiss or trill/squeak instead but how about cayuga? I heard they were pretty quiet.
    good foragers? will they help with garden pest control?
    will a kiddy pool be sufficient water space?
    which does better with cold weather? I live in wisconsin so... yeah.
    I hear muscovy fly a lot so I'd be clipping their wings for their saftey, how about cayuga?

    what is a good size house for 4 ducks of either breed?
    would I maybe be able to keep both together at the same time/in the same house at night? like maybe two of each or two of each?
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2015
  2. Twistedfeather

    Twistedfeather Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I actually would consider the mess level of a duck and a chicken to be about the same in different ways. Chickens love to scratch and tear at the ground which yes can causes problems, while ducks make mud.

    -I think Cayuga's and Muscovies are meat ducks more then they are good at laying. Runner ducks, Khaki Campells and Golden Cascades are

    -better known egg producers.

    -Both are pretty docile

    -the level of friendliness would all depend on how you work with them and tame them down

    -Cayuga's are known to be less loud than a Pekin duck but the females can still be considered loud. The muscovy is not a true duck so it's noise is going to be quackless because they are in a different genus alltogether known as Cairna or Dabbling ducks.

    -Muscovies are for sure, not positive about Cayuga's though. But overall I think most ducks do make good foragers. Muscovies are known to eat mice that are on the farm (I have witnessed a duck doing that too)

    -Yes just make sure you have one appropriate to the size of how many ducks you have, Ducklings don't have their oil glands yet and might drown if you let them in a kiddy pool before the uropygial gland develops.

    - They seem the same (they haven't been dubbed the best either) Muscovies have carbuncles on it's face that could get frostbitten and not to mention they come from warmer climates, so Cayuga but they are really close. I think the smaller bantam ducks face this problem more because they have less body mass.

    -There's no need to clip a Cayuga's wing saying only bantam ducks and Muscovies fly.

    Remember that these are larger ducks so they'll need a bigger room than a bantam duck would need.
    It's actually a good idea to buy two of each breed to see which one you prefer. You never know you might like both or might like a different breed altogether.

    -
     
  3. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    I find ducks easy to keep, once the proper infrastructure is set up. Predators will come out of nowhere, so they need a secure place to live, both night and day.

    I think both breeds you are considering are lovely! I have Runners and Buffs, excellent layers and foragers. And they are smallish, and not as cold-hardy as some have said. This is not a problem, as we have a walkout basement and converted part of it to their "bedroom." [​IMG] They have a little over 100 square feet for 13 ducks (about 3.5 to 4 pounds each). These days, when we won't see the warm side of freezing for at least another week, it is nice to have a roomy coop that I can spend time in as well, makes it easier to do room service, check on everyone, and keep them from getting too antsy.
     
  4. chillybird

    chillybird New Egg

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    I really wanted to have runners instead of muscovy or cayuga because they lay eggs better and oh my gosh look just so cute, but I read they can startle pretty easy? I think in the future should I change locations I really want a couple of those.

    wow thats a lot of space! that must be so fun, is it easy to keep clean with so much footage per duck?
     
  5. needlessjunk

    needlessjunk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think a lot whether or not a duck is friendly depends on the duck and now they were raised. I spend way more time with my current ducklings thab I did with my previous ducks and they are so friendly. I had pekins which were suppose to be super friendly and they were but now I have 2 runners, a welsh harlequin and a white layer. One of my runners loves people and treats and is the first to run up. Welsh harlequins are suppose to be super friendly and she is the least friendly out of the group but the easiest to hold. I love mixed flocks and would get whatever breeds you like.
     
  6. needlessjunk

    needlessjunk Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Since it does get really cold where you are I would do a bigger coop than what you think you need. They will be spending some quality time in there in the winter. I'm in TX so mine is only 3 sidled and mine only go in their house to sleep at night. It's never too cold for them to not want to go outside. The house will need to be predator proofed and you will have to herd them in there in the evenings. Mine would go in when I called at night after a while because I would put treats in there. So they knew the drill.
     
  7. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    My Runners do not startle easily, actually. I had read that they are skittery and that has not been my experience. They are high energy, so I suspect if they don't get enough exercise that might make for jittery ducks, but I have watched the ducks as big trucks go by, fireworks go off at the neighbors . . . they stay pretty calm. They all jumped when a hawk took a squirrel off the top of their pen, and were completely calmed down within a few minutes.

    Peas help them recover quickly. [​IMG]
     

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