Meet the new editions to the coop, Marigold and Daisy, Pekin ducks. For those of you who follow me on a regular basis you know I raise a batch or two of meat chickens every year. They take about 8 weeks from start to finish and then I clean and close up the coop for the rest of the years. Well not this year, I’ve had a couple of ducks move in.
These are actually part of my DIL’s flock. By the way Marigold and Daisy are names I gave them she didn’t have them named. She has another batch of Pekin ducks that are from an early spring hatching and these two that I have are from a late summer hatching. It seems the male from the first hatching thinks he rules the coop and spent much of his time beating up on these two ducks. He’d plucked most of the feathers out of their necks, had bloodied ones wing, and they’d become afraid to leave the coop.
My DIL asked me if I’d take them for a while so they could heal up and get old enough to figure out if they were male or female. I’ve had them for a few weeks now and their feathers are back in and they’re making themselves right at home. It took them several days to even leave my coop. I guess after being captured, stuffed in a box, and transported in the back of my truck they didn’t feel to safe in their new temporary home.
I finally chased them out of the coop several days in a row, they found the water to play in, and decided it was safe and they’ve been out picking bugs and playing in the rain having a grand old time. If these two happen to be males they’ll be butchered if they’re females she’ll bring them back to her coop for the eggs. The male tail feathers will curl up and they’re voices are quieter. That’s the way to tell male from female.
My coop isn’t set up for winter with heated bowls and such so it won’t be long before they’ll be moving again. Boy I thought meat chickens had big poo’s and were messy but I think ducks are equally as bad. I’ll be sad to see them go just because I like taking are of animals but I’ll also be glad I don’t have to trudge through the snow to care for them come winter. That’s the only reason why I don’t keep egg laying chickens.