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What is the best Drake to Hen ratio ?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Feathered Wings, Dec 29, 2010.

  1. Feathered Wings

    Feathered Wings Songster

    Oct 9, 2008
    I'm planning on ordering some Snowy Mallards and was thinking of 1 drake and 3 hens. I read here that having too many hens will wear out your drake and you could have numerous infertile eggs.
    Whats the best Ratio of Drake to Hens to achieve the highest fertility of the eggs, I will be hatching eggs from them.

  2. KansasKid

    KansasKid Songster

    Feb 7, 2010
    South East Kansas
    I don't know about wearing out a drake, when it was just 1 drake and 5 hens this summer he made sure not one got left out, but yes as the number of hens increases the fertility decreases. 1 drake to 3 hens is a good ratio and you should have good fertility, best ratio 1 drake to 1 hen although if you have multiple drakes and a 1 to 1 ratio they should all be separated to prevent hens from being breed by multiple drakes and causing problems for the hen.
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2010
  3. Feathered Wings

    Feathered Wings Songster

    Oct 9, 2008
    Quote:Thank you for your reply, I had been wondering about this since I saw it posted about using too many hens per drake.
    I'm going to stick with my original order thanks to your info and get the 1 Drake and 3 hens now that I know it will be okay.

    Thanks again [​IMG]
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I think the 1 to 3 ratio is a good place to start, and that watching to see how it works and adjusting may be necessary. Some drakes are more, uhm, active than others. And I have been told sometimes there is a female that gets worn down from being someone's favorite and needs to be separated out for some rest (her laying ability and general health can be at serious risk).

    So, see how everyone does and make changes if needed. I have learned from my runners that as much as I can read and listen, that watching their behavior and health tell me volumes about what works for this flock and what does not.

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