How many eggs to ducks lay? - Homesteading Today
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  #1  
Old 04/17/12, 01:26 PM
CNCfamily's Avatar  
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How many eggs to ducks lay?

I'm trying to convince my husband that i NEED ducks. It's not going well though. He says they won't earn their keep. Do they lay eggs like chickens? Not that i need any more eggs with 27 chickens....but it's a good start for my case if they do! Lol!

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  #2  
Old 04/17/12, 01:31 PM
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Ducks will generally lay longer into the cold season than will chickens. However, they usually won't start until the spring after they hatch. Some breeds are more known for egg laying than others. Some are more known for meat - but most people get darned good numbers of eggs from their meat birds - but those are less economical as you must spend more money just on feed to maintain the bodies of large meat breeds. Usually smaller breeds like Campbells, Runners, Welsh Harlequins, Golden 300's are superb egg producers and fairly efficient as well.

We sell our duck eggs for 3.00 per dozen. They are BIGGER than chicken eggs and taste heavenly in any application.

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  #3  
Old 04/17/12, 01:34 PM
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That's great news! Can they live in the same coop with the chickens? Or eat the same feed? Do they need nest boxes like chickens? Or do they just pick a place to lay (lots of high grass and such around our place), or is it an egg hunt with them?

I need to do some Googling i think!

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  #4  
Old 04/17/12, 01:39 PM
 
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I'm with your husband. Nasty, loud birds, lol... but yes, pretty. And can even be funny and sweet.

I had Blue Swedes, who gave me a dozen eggs every spring. Mostly yard ornaments and my entertainment. Then muscovies, who blessedly do not quack, and gave me eggs all summer long, until I let them brood.

I had Runners, supposedly the best of the best for egg layers, but they were killed by a dog before they started to lay. The one thing with all of them was the huge messy poops all over. I would pen them apart from my chickens next time.

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Old 04/17/12, 01:47 PM
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I have raised Rouens, Indian Runners, Pekin, and other various other breeds - but Khaki Campbells were my hands-down favorite.

My Khaki Campbells laid over 300 eggs a year!!!!! Now they were moneymakers and MORE than earned their keep!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Khaki_Campbell

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Last edited by Wind in Her Hair; 04/17/12 at 01:49 PM.
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  #6  
Old 04/17/12, 02:12 PM
Katie
 
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We Love our ducks, they usually start laying late January or early February & lay until fall.
If I gave them artificial light I would get eggs in the winter too.

I think ducks are more comical & hardier than chickens although they are messy I don't think ducks stink any more than chickens do.

I think a couple of your best egg layers would be Welsh Harlequins & A Runner variety like Indian Runners. Both of those breeds are naturally non flyers so they would stay where ever you put their pen.

We do let ours free range a few days a week too & they go right back to their pen & house at dark. They lay their eggs in a plastic tub I call their nest box & I have 1 in 2 different corners, they will lay together.

If you have roosters I would not put any drakes with the ducks since he may be mean & try to kill the drake. Just hen ducks may be OK with roosters but depends on the rooster I think.

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Old 04/17/12, 04:33 PM
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I think it all depends on how you keep them. Brooding ducklings can be horrible. We use raised brooders with mesh floors. We put a cement mixing tub underneath their waterer to keep it from making a mush underneath the brooder.

Most of the time, however, our muscovies go broody and will raise whatever we stick under them. That is completely care-free. We put momma and new ducklings in a brooder run and let them do it all, stink and mess free.

We also free range our birds over acres, 24/7, 365. Confined, they can make a mess.

They GENERALLY will pick a spot to lay. They won't use nestboxes on the walls like chickens - they will use corners of your coops. We have success supplying them with dog houses, barrels cut in half, storage bins with holes in them, truck tops etc to nest under.

I *really* like my ducks. They're only as messy as you allow them to be, IMO.

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  #8  
Old 04/17/12, 04:45 PM
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My Blue Runner, Nancy, lays one egg a day. I finally had the courage this past Sunday to try them myself. Did not go well...I guess I am allergic to duck eggs. I got really sick

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  #9  
Old 04/17/12, 04:50 PM
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Minelson, that's really weird. Usually people who are allergic to chicken eggs can eat duck eggs. I find they do not taste ANY different from chicken eggs, but have a SLIGHTLY firmer texture. it is NOT unpleasant however. They make the best hardboiled, deviled, scrambled, over-easy.... mmmmmmm.

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  #10  
Old 04/17/12, 04:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mygoat View Post
Minelson, that's really weird. Usually people who are allergic to chicken eggs can eat duck eggs. I find they do not taste ANY different from chicken eggs, but have a SLIGHTLY firmer texture. it is NOT unpleasant however. They make the best hardboiled, deviled, scrambled, over-easy.... mmmmmmm.
Well I can eat chicken eggs but not duck eggs...I won't try it again! I had 2 scrambled...ate them all up, I thought they were good tasting! That is all I had to eat. Nothing else at all. 2 hours later my stomach and intestines was not. good. at. all. I will spare you the details
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Old 04/17/12, 06:00 PM
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I have friends that can't tolerate duck eggs, though they do ok if the eggs are in something baked. I guess it's not an allergy, but an intolerance. I wonder if they'd develop more tolerance if they ate them regularly in things that digest ok? I don't know. I have other friends that can't eat chicken eggs, but do great with duck eggs. I'm happy I can eat them both and enjoy them!

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  #12  
Old 04/19/12, 11:23 AM
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Well ya'll have got me just about convinced to go get a pair of ducks while my husband is out on the road this week! How does that saying go? "It's easier to ask forgiveness than permission"? LOL!

I brought up the egg laying qualities of ducks and he just said "Since we might be short on eggs with only having 27 chickens.....".

Sarcastic butt head..... LOL!

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  #13  
Old 04/19/12, 03:13 PM
Katie
 
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I vote to get a couple of ducks while he's gone! With 27 chickens he probably won't notice 2 little ducks!

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  #14  
Old 04/19/12, 07:46 PM
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The only problem you will have with ducks is if you hate cleaning out waterers every single day. They really like something they can get their whole head into to wash their bills out and preen their feathers. They will love you if you give them a big water tank or something to swim in. They dive and swim around and flap and just enjoy themselves so much. I love to make mine happy that way, even if it's a pain in the hindquarters to clean out.

I have a 3 year old Pekin duck who still lays me an egg close to every single day, spring, summer and fall. She has picked back up this spring where she left off last fall. They are really not known for being the best layers but this particular duck is great. However, she has never set, even when I left the eggs for her in her nest. She just doesn't have the desire.

Enjoy your ducks!!

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  #15  
Old 04/19/12, 07:48 PM
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Oh and also, some ducks fly, and if they start doing that, clip their wings every time they molt! I have had many ducks up and fly away one day. I used to like watching them fly around the barnyard and crash land into the barn. But it wasn't a good idea; they all eventually took off one by one on the crisp fall days. I assume they followed the Mallards south and never returned.

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  #16  
Old 04/19/12, 08:31 PM
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This year I got 2 ducklings along with 7 chicks. Yes if kept in a pen they are very messy!
Funny the ducklings and chicks are all the same age but the ducklings got soooo much bigger faster then the chicks, they are now starting to range around but go back to their pen at night and the biggest (Pekin) acts like the guard while they are roaming. So the new gang in town is the Duck squad. It is funny watching them bathe and the chicks wait right there until they come out of the water.

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