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Ducks

We added ducks to our farm in April 2010. (Male ducks are called "drakes," female ducks are called "ducks" or occasionally hens, and only females quack). We started off with twelve, and have eight left as of 14 April 2011, plus eleven new ducklings from Holderreads. We've lost a few to predators, unfortunately.

Welsh Harelquin

listed as "Critical" on ALBC's Conservation Priority list .

This duck originated from a mutation in the Khaki Campbell breed, a khaki-brown colored duck. It is a light breed layer of white or greenish eggs, and was developed in 1949 in Wales. They are known to produce 275-350 eggs per year and are calmer birds than the Campbells, although some Harlequins are slightly more prone to flying than Campbells.

We will breed these ducks and sell surplus ducklings as pets, layers, or pairs/trios for breeding.

We currently have one drake and two ducks. Not all that remain are from Holderread's Waterfowl. We tentatively plan to order several more from Holderread's in 2012.

Silver Appleyard

listed as "Critical" on ALBC's Conservation Priority list .

The Silver Appleyard was developed in Britain before the start of World War II by Reginald Appleyard, a widely known breeder of domestic waterfowl. He was trying to produce "The Ideal Duck," and it would almost appear that he was successful. Successful, that is, if one is looking for a production duck rather than strictly ornamental.

The drakes are quick to mature and make fine table fowl. The 7-8 pound duck is an excellent layer of large white eggs. The duck is silvery-white with a heavy flecking of fawn on her back. The 8-9 pound drake has a beetle green head and neck and his throat is white with fawn markings. Add to this his silver-white neck ring, breast, wing coverts, and tail tip and you have a very handsome bird. Beak should be yellow, legs and feet orange, and eyes dark hazel.

We may eventually breed this breed, but not likely in 2011.

Stanbridge White (Magpie)

listed as "Critical" on ALBC's Conservation Priority list .

This strikingly marked Welsh breed is in the APA's Light Class of ducks. The hens are good layers for a general purpose breed. They are good foragers and make a fine table bird. In all other breeds of Magpie, the plumage should be white with two darker colored areas: the back (from the shoulders to the tail) and the very top of the head. Breeding well-marked Magpies is considered a real challenge. Black & White and Blue & White varieties are accepted in the APA Standard. Dun-colored also occur, as well as white, which has been developed into its own breed, the Standbridge White.

We would like to breed our own Stanbridge White. Our hen remains and we have four new ducklings from Holderreads.

Saxony

listed as "Critical" on ALBC's Conservation Priority list .

The Saxony is a German heavy breed of duck -- a dual purpose bird for both eggs and meat. [Saxony is a province in Germany] The drakes are colored somewhat like a faded Mallard, the ducks a soft buff; both have a hint of greyish-blue to their plumage. Males weigh 8 pounds, females around 7.

We will hopefully breed these in 2012 - we have seven new ducklings from Holderreads plus the year-old hen.

We may also obtain some Muscovy ducklings or hatching eggs in 2011. We will not breed them until 2012 or later.

Welsh Harlequin Ducks at Muscovy Duck Central.

Last updated 27 April 2011.