Friday, October 7, 2011

Ranch Animal Alphabet - D

31 for 21 - D is for Ducks
      Ducks made their way to our farm earlier this year. When I found out that the Muscovey Ducks were famous for making a farm "fly free", I decided we should get a "few" of these critters for our acreage. Well, a "few" turned out to be about 25!! There are pied ones, productions whites and even chocolates out there. the chocolate trio lives in the meat bunny barn to keep the bug population down out there. The others roam around the property between the house, the garden, the front yard and the pig pen down below.
     They also are considered a quackless duck and are not even classified as a typical water fowl. We have yet to experience the hatching abilities of these ducks because it was too hot for any birds to consider laying this past summer. I am hoping that after winter passes, the ducks will begin to lay. Supposedly a single duck will about 20 eggs in a clutch, sit on them and raise up the ducklings. She will lay up to 3 clutches a year. That's about 60 ducklings out of each duck!! If I have 20 females and they each lay 60 eggs a year - do the math - that's 1200 ducklings they will raise up!! The males grow to be about 12 to 15 pounds in just several months. We recently put one in the soup pot and made a delicious pot full of duck soup.
      So, for quiet fly and bug patrol, lots of eggs or ducklings to raise up for meat, I recommend getting Muscovey ducks. Plus, little folks (like my son) enjoy chasing them around some!!



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