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Question on breeding/hatching ducklings(Ancona) from a newbie (or wannabe, really..)

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by HouseMouseHens, Mar 10, 2013.

  1. HouseMouseHens

    HouseMouseHens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    So I made a thread about how we are thinking of getting a few ducks, you can see it down below. We were originally thinking of getting three different ducks(a Kahki Campbell, a Welsh Harlequin, and a Ancona) all females, but we are in contact with a local farm that breeds Anconas, and the guy made a really good case for getting all Ancona hens and a drake and hatching our own babies. We're leaning towards this because we would love to hatch some ducklings, but I am wondering a few things. Mainly, I am wondering if it's possible to have a few Ancona hens and a drake, and to also have a Harlequin and a Campbell in the same coop/pen. I assume the drake would want to mate with ALL the ducks, so would that be bad? Is there a specific season that mating generally happens, or is this something we would have to worry about ALL the time? Could we just separate them when we wanted to breed and hatch ducklings and then put them all back together?

    Help! :)
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    If you don't mind mutts, or just don't incubate the non-Anconas, I don't see a problem. But then, that assumes you can tell the difference between the Anconas' eggs and the others. Not always easy.

    Spring is hormone time, but some drakes are uhm frisky most of the year. Bean didn't notice the girls till Valentine's Day. Right now he is obsessed with Romy, and for a number of reasons Bean and his two girls are separated from the rest of the flock with fence, but they are almost always near each other. I am hoping this obsession passes. But the more I watch, the more I doubt it will be quickly over.

    Anyway.

    Yes, many people have breeding pens where they keep the ducks they want producing offspring together away from the others for a while. I don't know the exact length of time involved.
     
  3. ChristineR

    ChristineR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would get what you want and split out the Anconas about a month before you want to start hatching. That should be enough time.

    I love my Anconas, by the way.
     
  4. ChristineR

    ChristineR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I see you're in Portland. We're you talking to Boondockers? I wanted to get ducklings from them last year, but they seemed pretty disorganized and kept pushing back the date when they'd have ducklings. Were they able to tell you when they'd have ducklings this year?
     
  5. HouseMouseHens

    HouseMouseHens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yes, I am! I talked to the guy for a long while, and he seems to really have his ducks in a row (haha!), and gave me a lot of helpful information. He said thier first hatch is planned for around April 15th, as they are loading the incubators this week. He said they should have all colors, and they are straight run only. Are you looking to get a few this year?
     
  6. HouseMouseHens

    HouseMouseHens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Also, where in WA are you at, if you don't mind me asking? We lived in Olympia for years before we moved down here. :)
     
  7. ChristineR

    ChristineR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm in the Olympia area. We moved out past Oyster Bay several years ago. I grew up in Tumwater.

    I'm thinking about getting some ducklings from them, just to get some new blood in my little flock, but I'm not sure yet. I want to get some eggs from Coyote Night Acres, too, so we'll see.

    When you talked to him (the Boondockers guy), did he say how he was managing the Anconas since he got them from the Holderreads? I'm curious if he is maintaining their breeding standard or not.
     
  8. HouseMouseHens

    HouseMouseHens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh it's gorgeous out there! I do miss Olympia sometimes, though Portland is really great too. :)
    When you get ducklings this year (if you do) are you going to be looking for drake or hens? He sells them straight run, and we're not 100% sure if we want to go the route of having a drake yet, as we could just assimilate hens in with our chickens (our run is plenty big enough to add up to five duck with the girls), but drakes are a whole new ballgame. We are thinking that when we will get a couple in case some turn out boys (if we decide against drakes for now) and would end up selling the drakes(if we got any) and possibly extra hens depending on what we get. Just wondering if this ends up the case if you might be into buying them? We could probably sell them pretty easily locally, but I figured I would mention it since you are looking into the same breeder.

    He didn't mention a whole lot about maintaining the breed standard, but he knew I am totally new to ducks (I'm a chicken keeper only so far), so he probably didn't think I would know anything about it anyways. I'd suggest calling him up and asking. They also have a lot of info on their website. I didn't get to reading it all so I don't know what all is on there. He was really nice and full of info, so I'm sure he would answer any questions if you called.
     
  9. HouseMouseHens

    HouseMouseHens Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh, I just now noticed that Holderreads are local to me! I wonder if I could get a few ducklings from there? I figure it's a bit last minute since their website says most orders for April are in by December... But maybe since I only want one or two they'd be able to help me. They would still be straight run though... Seems like it's impossible to get a couple Ancona ducklings sexed around here without ordering them! And I am certainly not paying for a minimum order when I only want one!

    Edited to say: I just took a second look at thier price list, and it doesn't look like they even have Ancona's, so that's out because I can get a Kahki Campbell and a Welsh Harlequin sexed at my farm store here in the city. It's looking like Boondocks is the only place locally to get them. I called Healing Ponds Farm Store out in Beaverton on a tip from my feed store guy, and she said they could order them but wanted $15 each for straight runs.... Boo!
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2013
  10. ChristineR

    ChristineR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Portland is fun. I like Portland better than Seattle. I lived down in Wilsonville and Newberg for a couple years.

    Sorry, I don't need any more drakes, but I think you're right about being able to find homes for them locally. I think I'm going to sell a couple of the hens that I have now and replace them with Boondockers or Coyote Night hens.

    Not sure if you've seen this or not, but there's an Ancona thread here on BYC: https://www.backyardchickens.com/t/422411/ancona-ducks/700
     

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