Why are ducks better than other types of yard fowl? The answer is simple.
They will take up less time and resources while providing you with better nutrition and higher yields.
The bottom line is that if two people start in a survival situation, and the one has 20 chickens and the other 20 ducks, I would bet on the guy with the ducks.
Ducks give you more for less.
But Don’t Ducks Fly?
Ducks can fly. But if you were to ask duck owners how many of their ducks have flown away, they are bound to look at you funny.
It’s the same as asking cattle ranchers how many of their cattle have run away over the years? After all, cattle can run!
If you provide your ducks with a safe and protected sleeping area, a pond, and an area to forage in, they will never fly away. Hunger and Danger might drive them off, but if you take care of those two aspects, they will stay put.
Better Meat and Eggs
Duck meat is slightly lower in protein than chicken meat, but is richer in nutrients and also has a higher energy yield due to a higher fat to protein ratio. Particularly the skin of a duck has a good deal of fat.
In a survival scenario, you will need all the calories you can get, and if your body is adapted to run on ketones and glycogen, the fat from ducks will end up fueling your muscles and not accumulating in your arteries.
Duck eggs are actually what you should be after. Duck eggs have a higher protein and fat percentage than chicken eggs. They are also much higher in vitamin D and Vitamin B12.
100 grams of duck egg will cover almost your entire Vitamin B12 requirement. This is a big deal, as B12 deficiency can easily result from eating too many plants and is very detrimental to your nerve function and red blood cell production.
Duck eggs will ensure you stay in tip-top shape.
Duck Down Stuffing
Duck down is widely considered to be one of the best heat insulators. You can use duck down to stuff duvets, pillows, jackets, etc.
The great thing is that they have relatively thin feather shafts, which will not scratch you through the fabric.
Not all duck breeds excel equally at parenting. Khaki Campbell, which outlays most chicken breeds, is known for being extremely good parents.
This is important as you will want subsequent generations of ducks. Furthermore, parents teach valuable survival, foraging and also parenting skills. Ducks that don’t look after their offspring will not pass down valuable survival skills.
Furthermore, young ducks without parental protection, make easy targets for predators.
Not all murky water is bad. Modern people tend to want all water to look like it came from a bottle.
But, if you water plants with bottled water versus watering plants with nutrient and life-rich water, the plants getting some fish poop and amoebae will be much healthier.
Duck poop is not only fish food, but release nutrients into the water that your plants will love! Water that is rich in microbial life beats “dead” water hands down when you are trying to create a natural ecosystem.
Ducks do better when free-ranged than chickens would. The fact that they can forage in water and on land gives them more versatility when searching for food.
Ducks also like eating slugs and snails, so that’s a big plus for your vegetable patch.
Ducks also have more options for evading predators, so they should last longer in environments that support a wide range of domesticated and wild animals.
What a Mess!
Some people complain that ducks are messy. If you are keeping your animals in a small enclosed area, I would agree.
But, this article is assuming that you have a small garden or homestead where you will be keeping your ducks. Chicken poop is firmer and more pelletized than duck poop, which is very watery.
Ducks kept in a small enclosure will require that their area is cleaned from time to time to prevent unhygienic circumstances.
Gardeners that have fine gardens will attest to the destructive nature of chickens. We are not talking Protester type destruction here, as neither ducks nor chickens fling rocks or upend police vehicles.
Chickens’ natural way of foraging is quite destructive, particularly to young and delicate plant life. A few chickens will benefit your soil, but they can wreak havoc in newly planted areas. Seedlings beware!
Raising ducks is about as easy as raising chickens. The most important thing you want to provide to your ducks is a safe place to breed and raise their young while being able to forage for food.
Elevated platforms that keep out the wind and rain will do perfectly. I have always recommended creating an island in the center of the pond as this could further help to keep predators at bay.
Young ducks will forage with their parents and are natural swimmers. So, you don’t need to worry about the young drowning.
If your ducks are in a small enclosure, you will need to clean it regularly. Webbed feet and sloppy poop don’t mix well, and you will soon have a sloppy, slushy, reeking mess.
You can feed ducks grains and greens, much the same as chickens.
I feed my ducks leftover vegetable snippets that I chop finely and scatter around their dam.
Get Your Ducks In a Row
So, there you have it, folks.
I would bet that many of you never realized that ducks are such extremely valuable livestock to have in a survival situation.
Even if you just want to augment your current diet and bring in some variety.
Ducks are a great option. Get Quacking!
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