Why get ducks instead of chickens?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by domromer, Apr 26, 2009.

  1. domromer

    domromer Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 11, 2007
    I'm deciding between ducks and chickens. I've had chickens before so I have some poultry experience. I've heard certain breeds of ducks are prolific layers and are generally healthier and more hardy than chickens. This definitely appeals to me. I just wanted to hear from other duck owners as to why they chose ducks over chickens. I was thinking of getting Kahiki campbells. I like that they are good layers and very quiet as well.
  2. headred

    headred Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 28, 2009
    Khakis, my favorite subject! I have 8 week old Khakis, one pekin and I think one rouen. Love them! The khakis are very laid back, don't make much noise, eat out of my hand, follow me around the yard, and mostly a great entertainers. They are a blast to watch in the water! I have them on my website if you want to see more. I'm pretty much addicted!
  3. ChickenToes

    ChickenToes Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 14, 2008
    NE Wisconsin
    To me, ducks have more personality than chickens. It's so great to see ducks waddling around the yard and playing in puddles.

    They are extremely cold hardy and, for me, are easier to take care of in the winter than chickens are. I use a big black rubber bowl for their water, and every morning I just kicked the ice out and filled it with warm water. For the chickens I was constantly dealing with frozen waterers and frozen poop all over everything. That's another nice thing about ducks, they don't fly all over and poop on everything.

    Khaki Campbells and Welsh Harlequins are the most prolific egg layers, followed by Runners. My Khakis are friendly and curious, I really enjoy the breed. I'm getting Welsh Harlequins in a few days, so then I'll be able to compare the two breeds.
  4. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

    May 7, 2007
    Forks, Virginia
    The right ducks are laying machines! I love my silver appleyards. My kids always choose duck eggs over chicken eggs for meals if given a choice.
  5. nivtup

    nivtup Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 24, 2008
    Shelton Washington
    We have Duck and Chickens.

    Way more chickens than ducks.

    The Khaki Campbells are pretty much care free, feed and water, put them to bed at night, they do need to be herded in, unlike chickens that go to bed on their own.

    The ducks all layed every day up until the point they started hiding eggs in the brush, and now are slowly diappearing one by one to sit on eggs.

    They do tend to lay eggs "wherever".

    No rooster crowing, although the girls can be loud at times.

    I think you should choose BOTH and perform your own comparison.

  6. chickens4me

    chickens4me Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 1, 2008
    South Carolina
    I just hatched out some Khaki Campbells this last week. My kids just love the ducks way more than my chickens.~~They love their webbed feet and their personalities. [​IMG]

    Mine are pretty shy so far, but I like them, too. I still like my chickens though....Get Both!...if you can.

    I also have an approx 6 week old Runner Duck as well. It is so much fun to have around, too. [​IMG] I can't wait to see some of their eggs.
  7. jrleader99

    jrleader99 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I had my heart set on getting chickens for about the past 2 years and found someone selling a dozen chicks. I went and saw them and she had Indian runners for sale also. After talking to her for a bit and having my wife and kids come and look we bought the chicks and 8 runners. Now my wife and kids want more runners. I think they have that bug. [​IMG]

    We got the runners because they are absolutely adorable, are egg producing machines (upto 300/yr), eat more bugs than plants (so the garden won't suffer as much) and they are absolutely adorable (oh did I mention that already!!!). We let our ducks free range when I am around and can keep a close watch on them. Our Chocolate lab loves to follow them around and knows not to chase them. My four year old daughter can chase and catch them. She loves to hold them and they let her without scratching her. Also ducks are supposedly more disease tolerant and cold tolerant.

    Our chickens are kept in their run and coop so far. They too are very cool but the kids and wife are a little more afraid of them (not sure why). There are two that are definitely our favorites and the others are growing on us. The chickens are much more dusty than the ducks are but the ducks cause their area to be much more damp or at times soaking wet.

    If you have the room and are not restricted by neighbors or neighborhood rules, I would suggest getting both chickens and ducks. They both are great in their own respects.
  8. 4hooves&featheredfriends

    4hooves&featheredfriends Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 5, 2009
    New Hampshire
    Why is just the question? Just get both [​IMG]
  9. domromer

    domromer Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 11, 2007
    Thanks for all the great replies everyone. I really appreciate it. I keep hearing the same things over again, friendly, easier on the yard, and silly with fun personalities. We have had chickens in the past and they were super friendly so Im interested to see what ducks are like. I've done a ton of research in the past few days and am pretty much sold on the idea. In the meantime I've posted an ad on craigs list looking for someone with duck eggs to try before I make the jump and get them. We eat a lot of eggs and my wife is a finicky eater so I'd want to make sure we like the taste first.

    I also like the idea that they are very cold hardy. Out new house is at 7000ft so I was really worried about the chickens suffering from frostbite and my own ability to build a large well insulated coop to keep the chickens warm and happy. It sounds like the ducks will be better in that regard.

    I like the idea of Campbell's as they are super egg producers, but I like the look of pekings more. I haven't read up much on pekings. I guess I'll need to do that to find out more about their egg laying prowess and general health and disposition.

    Most likely I'll end up getting both eventually.. We've had chickens before and really like them. I just felt like trying something different. Gotta feel out the neighbors as well. My new house has a smaller yard and the neighbors are pretty close. It's also a town with old fashioned laws that ban any poultry as livestock. I know for a fact that a lot of people in my town have backyard flocks, so it's really based on if your neighbors want to be jerks and make a stink about it.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2009
  10. headred

    headred Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 28, 2009
    Good luck in Flagstaff. Our town allows poultry in the backyard with a few easy rules. I still have one neighbor complaining about the ducks, but he's old and crotchity! There will always be someone!

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