what type of ducks should i get?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by woogie g3, Oct 31, 2010.

  1. woogie g3

    woogie g3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i need help picking what kind of ducks to get..i need help.
    i've never had ducks before...and im thinking of getting a few i don't have a huge place they would go in a pen what kind do u think would be best i want some that will be tame...i have a incubator and was going to hatch them...what kind should i get??
     
  2. PatS

    PatS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pets, eggs, dinner, or a combination? What is your fence situation? How near are the neighbors? I am sure there are other questions I should be asking...
     
  3. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    Also where do you live? Weather should also be considered, especially since you want to hatch them. It may be best to wait until spring if you have winter weather conditions. Make sure to get everything you need for raising them. You should get an electrolyte/vitamin/mineral mix besides the food. Many oversee this little thing and once sudden have lame ducks due to deficiencies. It can be fixed, but it is best to prevent it in the first place.
     
  4. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    PatS asks good questions. Hard to say without knowing your situation. If you don't have a lot of space and you just want them for pets, Calls or other bantam breeds can be good. Calls are noisy, though, so neighbors may be an issue.

    Muscovies are both quiet and tame, but large.

    None of the above are great layers. Indian Runners, Khaki campbells, Welsh Harlequins, and magpies are good layers, among others.

    What attributes are most important to you?
     
  5. woogie g3

    woogie g3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    i have had chickens before... and i wanted them mainly as pets. not for dinner.. and i live in north carolina. and i probly can only have a few i have like a dog kennel thats 10 by 10 and i have a roof on it....i has thinkin i could put a kiddie swimmin pool in it...since i have 1
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2010
  6. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    You can keep a small flock of nearly any breed in a pen that size. A word of warning from a fellow North Carolinian--line that dog kennel with 1/2" hardware wire (available at Lowe's or Home Depot--not cheap but worth every penny) from the ground up to about 2 feet (or 18 inches if the wire is cheaper at that width). Otherwise you WILL have at least one experience with a raccoon reaching through the links and eating the head off a duck--if not sooner, then later. You also need to cover the top of the pen with something--inexpensive chicken wire is fine--to prevent flying & climbing predators from breaking into the pen. I also line the bottom--under the bedding--with cheap wire (usually re-claimed from other projects or old fencing) to prevent digging predators, though I've never had evidence of digging, so I'm not sure how necessary this step is.

    I have a friend with Indian Runners for sale for $5 each, many colors and both genders. He's in Locust & can deliver to Charlotte. They make decent pets, great layers. But if you want a friendly duck, you should probably go with muscovies (large, very sweet) or calls (small, not sure on personality)... Welsh harlequins are reportedly calm, and magpies are too (but hard to find). I'll have ducklings (in Charlotte) in the Spring--Runners and magpies. The mags are very pretty and would make good pets if hand-raised. I'll have blues, blacks, and silvers. You might also consider Carolina Waterfowl Rescue in Indian Trail--they nearly always have adult ducks available for adoption, and may be able to match you with some that are already tame and ready for winter.

    Make sure you do your research & provide them with adequate winter shelter & plenty of GOOD quality feed.

    Good luck!
     
  7. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

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    P.S. A kiddie pool is perfect for water. And in a 10x10 space, you can keep up to five or maybe six full-sized ducks, a larger number of bantams. But the pen will stay cleaner & the ducks happier at lower densities. Just three or four will probably be ideal for your space. [​IMG]
     
  8. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    The space is not very big. I would not get more then 4, and no more then one male. More males would mean over breeding with possible injuries, or male fights. Best is only to have 2 ducks with a small space. Just remember one duck poos as much as a 50 pound dog only spread out in several piles. They are messy too, so all that should be considered. Also be prepared to have them in your house if you incubate. They are not fully feathered out until they are 3 months old, and probably need another month for down development. This means they are not ready to stay outside until March. Are you ready to deal with the mess inside until then?
    Best to take your time and to research the various breeds over winter and plan ahead with setup etc.
     
  9. woogie g3

    woogie g3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    my 10 by 10 pen can be expanded i already have more panels that can be added on... i was thinkin maybe like only 3 or 4. and im not goin to incubate them now during winter i was finding out info and making my mind up on wht kind to get and plannin on incubat them around march.


    ** and another question, if i got runners or some kind that dont fly would they do fine in a pen without a roof and are they friendly... because i have i big pen i used to have chickens in.
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2010
  10. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    Runners tend to be nervous ducks. You will have to handle them a lot while babies so they become used to that. Metzer has a nice comparison chart about the various breeds they offer. This also means that other breeds are out there, and they are not listed like the calm Saxony duck. Never the less the chart is pretty good.
    http://www.metzerfarms.com/DuckBreedComparison.cfm
    I let my ducks free range all day on about 1 acre we have fenced in for them. It's not totally secure, but they love it out there. I also let them into my back yard in the evening, which works out well for us. No weeds to report or to take care of! My Saxonies are very calm ducks and go along with out 4 large dogs. They are not afraid of the dogs or the cat. They actually chase the cat when she decided to get into their territory.
     

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