which hatchery?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by duck&chickencrazy, Nov 23, 2010.

  1. duck&chickencrazy

    duck&chickencrazy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 2, 2008
    I plan on ordering some ducklings in spring and i am looking for some show quality birds. What would be the best hatchery to order from? i am looking for specific breeds. Welsh harlequin and buff orpington.

    im thinking about ordering from Holderread but they dont have buffs...but im ok with that i guess...i really would like some more welsh harlequins tho and i added it up and i think it would come out to be $77.25 for what i want. thats for 15 ducklings. what do you guys think? or is there a better hatchery out there?
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2010
  2. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    Get some Saxony ducks. They look similar to the buffs. I have some and love them. They are sweet, laid back, and are easy to handle.
  3. Wifezilla

    Wifezilla Positively Ducky

    Oct 2, 2008
    For show quality, Holderread's or a really good private breeder if you can find one locally. My Holderread's welsh harlequins are great.
  4. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    You really can't beat Holderread. Which is kind of scary, actually. I worry about what is going to happen when he eventually retires. But yes, if you can get what you want from Holderread go for it. And order now--he'll be sold out by next Spring.
  5. StevenW.

    StevenW. Lovin' My Quackers!

    Oct 7, 2010
    Central, Illinois
    I'd go for McMurray
  6. Rosecomb-Ryan

    Rosecomb-Ryan East Indie Crazed

    Apr 12, 2008
    Sacramento CA
    Quote:I thought they were looking for show quality stock? Holderread is the best for quality. They have some AWESOME birds!
  7. Omniskies

    Omniskies Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 7, 2008
    Don't buy from a hatchery if you want show quality birds. Only buy from a hatchery if you want birds that kinda-sorta resemble what the breed description sort of says the duck might look like. Hatcheries will sell you a sorta-lookalike bird and tell you it's a critically rare breed. If you want a rare breed you'll need to go through a breeder (which includes Holderread's operation). If you want washed out, overly-white Harlequin drakes and embarrassingly marked Harlequin hens, then pick a hatchery.

    Another thread made me slightly bitter [​IMG].

    But seriously, hatcheries don't have the means or the inclination to have good quality stock. McMurray is going to be the closest you'll find, and even they are hit and miss. If you are going to spend the money you may as well get what you are really after. It costs an awful lot in time and money to raise a lookalike.
  8. KansasKid

    KansasKid Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 7, 2010
    South East Kansas
    I would go with holderread. I know i haven't actually seen mcmurray's operation but a big turkey breeder that knows there operation told me they shoot more for quantity than quality, i have also had a few other people tell me this. But again i guess this can be considered "third hand information"

    overall i have heard better things about holderread's birds than mcmurray's

    I didn't happen to here all of this of course till after i had ordered from mcmurray, i ordered some mallards and rouens and hoped that the rouens would be standard-bred but Unfortunately they were production bred. but i'm still happy because to me a ducks a duck and when i show birds (just county shows) i do showmanship so if the don't quite match up to APA standards is fine with me.

    Edited for spelling, Grammar, to add a few other points, and to make it not confusing. [​IMG]
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2010
  9. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    I just want to say, as a person who is now completely sold on the concept that line matters, that my first birds were from McMurray and they are fine birds. I like them a lot, they lay well, and are funny and fun to be around.

    But they are NOT show quality, and now that I also have some Holderread birds, I see what GOOD birds are supposed to look like. I ordered Holderread's utility birds and they were still far superior to the McMurray birds in both laying and breed standard.

    BUT, I am not going to badmouth McMurray because they really did deliver decent birds that do fit the basic requirements that I wanted. And they probably *do* select for laying ability--it would be in their best interest to do so. But I don't think they're as systematic or deliberate in their process as Holderread, and the laying ability is not as good as Holderread.

    But then, not much is as good as Holderread, so there you go. If you want show quality, order top quality Holderread or from a private breeder with a top notch operation. Ask them how many shows they won last year with what birds. That will tell you a lot about the quality of their birds.
  10. duck&chickencrazy

    duck&chickencrazy Chillin' With My Peeps

    Dec 2, 2008
    ok i think i will go with holderread...i have 2 welsh harlequins already and i just really like the breed so i wanted to get more. they are just so pretty, such sweet birds, and they are great layers. Thanks for everyones input!! Now i just have to wait till i get my paycheck then i will put my order in!! [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

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