Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Muscovy Ducks

Remember a few weeks ago when I was going to ask more questions about getting some Muscovy ducks? I've been doing research on them, and in the process, I found a lady who was just giving away 7 of her ducks! Normally, people sell them for about $14 or $15. That's what I was going to have to pay in the spring for some.
So, two days ago, I ran out in the pouring rain and mud, and got myself a little flock of ducks! They are about 4 months old. They reach sexual maturity at about 7 months, so they will be of breeding age come spring. What a score!!!

Muscovy ducks

There are 2 definite females, and 2 definite males, and 3 of which I am unsure. You can eat their meat and eggs, and sell their chicks, so I think my investment will pay itself off. They are also extremely useful around a farm. People who have them around horses, etc, report a reduction of up to 80% in the fly population. They also eat slugs (my nemesis!!) and other bugs.

Makeshift 'quicky' shelter for my new ducks!

I made a quicky shelter for them out of pallets, hay, and an old tarp. I am going to make a bigger, better shelter for both the ducks and my layer hens, and put them out in the pasture, so the chicken coops can recover and grow grass and weeds again. Right now, they are just stinky mud, and it is getting quite disgusting. Pasture raising is also the healthiest way to raise your poultry! I am just hunting for a used car canopy (cheap!) to use for them. Also, because the Muscovy's have REALLY sharp claws, they will be excellent to put for protection for the chickens. I was worried about 'coons and such, but I think these ducks should solve that problem.

I have never had duck before. I guess these ducks are super-lean, and look more like beef, but aren't gamey or anything. I will try some next fall, and let you know!

What else can I tell you about these ducks? Oh! They are quiet... no quacking! And they are roosting ducks, not swimming ducks. They can swim, but don't need or usually want to much. All in all, very interesting, and should be alot of fun!

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Flooded Driveway

Flooded Driveway
Too much RAIN!