What should I own first; duck/turkey/chicken/pheasant?

Discussion in 'Turkeys' started by momof2redheads, Apr 24, 2008.

  1. momof2redheads

    momof2redheads Hatching

    Apr 24, 2008
    SE Michigan
    I am hoping to find someone out there to advise me on what kind of bird would be right for me and my family. There are so many kinds of birds out there that even if I read all of the information all day long I will not know what to purchase. So I need recomendations on what would be right for us. Here is what I am looking for. I have two girls under the age of 5 who would find a pet bird really cool! I am wanting them to experience and interact with the bird. I love the idea of a chicken tractor and fertilizer for my garden. I only have an acre and a half. I have an ornery dog who would love chicken dinners. I would also like eggs if possible. I live in rural community. We're pretty sure we don't want noisy chicken roosters but if we have to we can.
    I am leaning towards chickens but am really open to ducks, turkeys, or other fowl if they would be a better fit for my family.
    Thanks for your time and I would love your words of wisdom.
  2. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Crowing

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    Welcome to BYC. Here is a quick, off the top of my head run down with fowl I have raised -

    Ducks are wet and messy. Everything is about the water. They play in the water, swim in the water, poop in the water and mate in the water. It is a big wet poopy mess where they live. The ducks eat feed but also like to forage for bugs and insects and things. The largest ducks are about 9 pounds.

    Geese are not as bad but they have have big poops like dogs actually so you add water and you have a big poopy mess. Geese eat feed but they are better with a pasture to graze on -they don't eat bugs and stuff. Geese can be aggressive. The ganders in some breeds can grow to be 20 pounds or more.

    Turkeys are big. A tom can get to 40 pounds or more. They aren't cuddly or kid friendly as they mature. A big turkey hen isn't a lap sitter either.

    Chickens come in all colors and sizes. They don't mind being locked in a nice clean hen house with a run. They like to be safe and secure at night and will go back to their hen house before dark to roost through the night. They can be raised easily in a back yard. They can be cute and cuddly for a very long time. They will boggart for treats and want to sit in your lap when you spend time with them daily cultivating their friendship.

    I think with your young children you'll want the chickens.
  3. ticks

    ticks Pheasant Obsessed

    Apr 1, 2008
    The Sticks, Vermont
    well first of all welcome. This is my first my first time raising poultry and I have chickens and pheasant. pheasant are a little more hard to raise and are more delicate. I'm up for the challenge are you?
  4. coopist

    coopist Songster

    Jan 2, 2008
    Midwest U.S.
    Well, all of them have their charms, but if you're worried about noise, you should know that ducks can be pretty loud, depending on breed. Waterfowl can also be somewhat messy.

    Turkeys are big and more difficult to raise than chickens, most of the time. They're prone to more illnesses and the babies are less self-sufficient IMO. The hens can be very sweet, but the males are less manageable, generally speaking. To be really healthy, they need a lot of space and room to move. Some can really fly too. I had some Royal Palm hens once that used to fly up onto the roof of my house as if it were the most natural thing in the world.

    I would strongly recommend just a few chickens, hens for a beginner, perhaps a mild-tempered breed, like bantam brahmas.

    Later on, you can graduate to ducks and turkeys [​IMG]
  5. Katy

    Katy Flock Mistress

    I'd say chickens first....then ducks. Ducks are MUCH messier and in some ways more work......they all have their charms.

    Welcome to BYC!
  6. lauralou

    lauralou Songster

    Dec 10, 2007
    Central Virginia
    I just wanted to add that you don't have to get a rooster. You can get sexed chicks from a hatchery, and order all females. They will still lay eggs, but the eggs will be infertile. No difference, they look the same, taste the same, just can't hatch chicks. Some hatcheries will send small orders.

    Good luck and welcome to BYC!
  7. chicken_boy_Kurt

    chicken_boy_Kurt Songster

    Mar 20, 2008
    Welcome. And I'd say chickens too but let me just say, if you're looking for a quiet bird and really want ducks, get muscovies, they're quackless (they make a quiet hissing noise). But they get big, the biggest about 15 lbs.

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