Someone tell me about ducks...

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by EggsForIHOP, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. EggsForIHOP

    EggsForIHOP Songster

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    Apr 18, 2010
    TEXAS
    We are debating between branching into meat rabbits or ducks this year....we seem have to gotten the hang of the "chicken thing" and feel that it is time to move on.....can't eat just chick and pork all year at this place [​IMG] And we have come to HATE buying meat at the store....so it's time to branch out some....we have gathered much info on rabbits, but none yet on ducks...can someone maybe help point us the right way? What breeds of duck are good for meat? Easy to raise? Is there a CRX of the duck world to look for? Anything special to take into consideration when raising meat ducks? Do they have issues similar to what the CRX has? All info is GREATLY appreciated!
     
  2. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Songster

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    Pekins are the classic meat duck. Muscovy ducks are also popular and are much quieter. In france they cross muscovy drakes and pekin hens for their meat ducks.
     
  3. PatS

    PatS Songster

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    Mar 28, 2009
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    [​IMG] I'm interested in seeing the responses you get. I'm looking at a dual-purpose breed, the Ancona, and weighing whether to begin raising them this year as opposed to quail or rabbits.

    Things I'm considering: I HEAR ducks are both much cuter and much messier than chickens. I like the taste of duck meat more than rabbit. It gets HOT here in the summer and heat is hard on rabbits. Ducks like to free-range, which is fine here at day, but might be a PITA when it comes to bedtime. We had to walk our turkeys into the pen every night and that task got very old.
     
  4. gmendoza

    gmendoza Songster

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    Mar 23, 2010
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    Muscovyies can be hearded and will obey.As long as you establish where their home is,they will go back to it at night.They are a good meat bird as well.Heres a pic of our muscovies.Their are currently 14 eggs that they are trading time on.

    Mutt(drake) Flysalot(hen) and Limpy(hen)
    [​IMG]
     
  5. sydney13

    sydney13 Songster

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    Mar 11, 2010
    Massachusetts
    Pekins are the most common meat ducks and muscovies behind them. Some hatcherys such as Murray McMurray sell what is called a "giant pekin" and that would be as close to a CornishX as you could get in the duck world. Pekins are supposed to grow fast and produce a large carcass. Muscovies produce very lean duck meat and I've seen it recremended to try Muscovy before you raise some to make sure you like the flavor. Muscovys are great foragers and mainly eat bugs and grass and very little feed. They don't quack and instead hiss so they are good in an area with grumpy neighbors. This is a picture of my Muscovy
    [​IMG]
    I was going to use her for meat but decided to keep her around instead [​IMG]
     
  6. Totalcolour

    Totalcolour Songster

    I had Cayugas, Indian Runners and Muscovies, and now only have Muscovies. [I also have rabbits and chickens and sometimes a couple of goats] They really aren't worse than chickens, in fact they are very hardy, rarely get sick and don't scratch up the yard the way chickens do, and forage for most of their food. They are excellent weeders and lawn mower - hubby hasn't had to mow the backyard since we got them. Plus, they are very quiet!

    The meat is exquisite - a bit like ham in texture, but a lovely "ducky" taste. They are much leaner than other ducks. Cooked right there's nothing I'd rather eat, only it is a bit high in calories!

    Muscovy duck breast sells for over $20 per pound. Check out D'Artagnan

    http://www.dartagnan.com/51188/565667/Muscovy-Duck/Muscovy-Duck-Breast.html

    Good luck
     
  7. pringle

    pringle Songster

    Apr 16, 2009
    Pepperell,MA
    If you are looking for very fast growth rate there is nothing better then the pekin,it can be butchered at 7 weeks if you want. If you want a duck that is quieter,nicer,and forages better then get muscovy's. They have leaner meat that some people say tastes kind of like veal and are good to butcher around 14 weeks.
     
  8. homesteadapps

    homesteadapps Songster

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    Nov 8, 2010
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    Pekin's are ready in 7 to 8 weeks

    Meat rabbits such as New Zealand and Californian are read in 8 to 10 weeks as fryers.

    If you are butchering yourself the rabbits are easier to skin and clean then plucking or skinning a duck.

    Ducks seem to be a lot less work than rabbits because if left to free range they almost take care of themselves.

    Ducks can be a bit messy (change water frequently) and will turn a nice patch of lawn into a mud hole if given the opportunity,

    We raise both and like both. The ducks are entertaining too.


    For sustainability the rabbits become easier because the mother raises them -- no incubating and Pekins do not like to sit on their eggs.

    Depends on what you are after but both taste great.
     
  9. dianaross77

    dianaross77 Songster

    Oct 10, 2010
    Grand Blanc, MI
    Another plus for the muscovies is that they tend to be broody and are usually good mothers.
     
  10. peterlund

    peterlund Songster

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    Jan 29, 2010
    MA Cranberry Country
    Muscovies are my choice also. Great eating, and they do forage for a good part of their food....
     

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