Ducks and Chickens? - The Horse Forum

 
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post #1 of 10 Old 07-17-2010, 12:51 AM Thread Starter
Yearling
 
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Ducks and Chickens?

I've cared for chickens before, and intend to have a small flock (4?) soon, when I get in to my new place, wherever that may be...

Anyhow, my real question- I've always wanted a peking duck. I just do. They ar cute and they have orange beaks and feet . Anyways, I know they usually come in breeding pairs, and would it be alright to keep the male/female ducks in with the female chickens? I would try to get tham all at as young as feasible, but would it work...?

...you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. ... Explore. Dream. Discover.”
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post #2 of 10 Old 07-17-2010, 01:09 AM
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Ducks may look cute, but they are so much more work than chickens! They need swimming water that they dirty up in seconds flat, they eat a heckuva a lot of food, and they are loud as can be! (especially pekins) They are also wayyy more unfriendly than chickens and you need more than 1 of them so they don't get lonely.

You can see how you like them but here's my warning ;) Trust me, I thought the same as you: aww what cute duckies.. then I learned... :O

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post #3 of 10 Old 07-17-2010, 01:39 AM Thread Starter
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I'm used to high maintenancee animals...

So...
Seperate coops then

...you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. ... Explore. Dream. Discover.”
–Mark Twain
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post #4 of 10 Old 07-17-2010, 07:47 AM
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The poo.
A lot.

We had ducks as kids. One morning we went out to feed them and they weren't in their pen. I asked my parents where they went and they said "They flew away". Years later I found out that they were actually given to my neighbours for their Christmas lunch, haha. Poor duckies.

But yes, they are high maintenance. They shouldn't need a separate pen, as long as you introduce them right. A friend of mine has her ducks and chickens together and they get along fine.

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post #5 of 10 Old 07-17-2010, 08:36 AM
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I don't have any experience with chickens, but I love my ducks! We have about 30 right now (includes 18 ducklings to be sold). As for keeping chickens and ducks together I've heard of some who do and some who don't, the latter being because the ducks yuck up the water so bad and chickens don't appreciate that. :)

I agree with the others about the mess and noise, although it's only the females who have the loud quacks. Drakes have very low, raspy, "whisper-y" sounds. I also agree to not keep just one, get at least two.

I don't find them to be high maintenance at all. Ours free range 24/7, have a pool and a pond. In the summer I only put food out twice a day because they forage all day long making them excellent bug control.

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post #6 of 10 Old 07-17-2010, 12:40 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, so they can be in the same enclosure as long as they're indroduced properly... got it
I was planning on letting them loose during the day anyways, as I intend to have a perimeter fence.

...you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. ... Explore. Dream. Discover.”
–Mark Twain
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post #7 of 10 Old 07-18-2010, 12:13 AM
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They are messy, and I'd say that's the biggest thing, you wouldn't have to get a male/female pair, you can have two females, and like was said the females are the noisy ones. I have one duck that prefers to be a loner, she's a snowy mallard w/ a crooked neck (we call her drunk duck), she's also the most friendly and likes to hang out w/ me when I milk the cow.

My ducks freerange, so the mess is easy to handle. They know where the creek is, but I still have to keep fresh water out, so they don't play in the puddle next to the road. Most of my ducks are spotted, mixed magpie types, but I do have one pekin. And they all get along w/ the chickens wonderfully, infact I have four new ducklings right now that were hatched by the chickens.
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post #8 of 10 Old 01-09-2011, 09:16 PM
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ducks poop, and are loud and can hurt-
I have 3 ducks and once I was holding it and with that 'cute' little beak, she grabbed my skin and pulled on it (oww!). I had some in the past (we teach our poultry to go in to the coop at night.) and they wouldn't go up after a while. They all got eaten. But I was able to put them in with my chickens, and yes, they were alright together

So you might say awww cute, but just remember, they are more work than chickens.

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post #9 of 10 Old 01-11-2011, 09:50 AM
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Ducks may be cute but they are not to be underestimated. They are like puppies that never grow up; cute, but really difficult. This website is very helpful: :> Ducks, Duck, Pekin Duck, photos, pictures, games, webcam, birds, baby, babies, ducklings Read the page called "before you get a duck" It is a bit harsh, but very true.

First of all, ducks need a pool to swim in which they will turn to pond water in a matter of hours (unless you have a pond or course). You can't have just one duck because they are very social animals and will get depressed. Female ducks are really loud and male ducks can and will (without proper, consistent training) pinch you until your hands bleed. You have to be careful to feed ducks correctly because they are fragile and can die if fed the wrong diet, like bread. They are also vulnerable animals and will be eaten if left outside at night so they have to have a secure pen that is not too small or a big pond to sleep in. They are also very, very messy and will make more wet, smelly poop than could possibly be produced by such a small animal.

With that said, ducks also make great pets when properly cared for. They are very smart, funny and loving. They can learn to understand words and my drake can understand complex sentences now. If you invest enough time in it, you can learn duck language too and have conversations with your duck. You can take them exploring with you or snuggle with them on the couch. Perhaps one of the best things about having a duck is the water games you can play together. As a farm animal they make amazing bug control and are lots of fun to watch and interact with.

So think it over carefully! They are great animals but they will take a lot of responsibility (and cleaning, haha)

Last edited by WalnutPixie; 01-11-2011 at 10:00 AM.
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post #10 of 10 Old 01-11-2011, 10:00 AM
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Ducks are messy and loud creatures !
But they are also pretty cute. I would defiantly do separate coops.
I have probably gone through 20 or so pekins over the years (sold,death) and I have never had a mean one.

Just throwing this out there- never get geese. We have 6 and I'm about ready to throw these in a random pond ! The only time they are quite is when they are sleeping. They bite...hard
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