creative 1975

Archive for July, 2013|Monthly archive page

Quack!

In Non-Fiction on July 23, 2013 at 3:27 pm

Image(Daffy! 12 weeks old, approx)

Contradictory to the title of this post, our ducks don’t quack; they are Muscovy ducks (Cairina moschata) and they don’t make the quacking sound we’d expect them to create. Alternatively, they make a kind of high pitched hissing/chirping noise—it’s very cute.

They were not very old when we brought them home… two females and one drake. They have now grown into lovely looking ducks and are a wonderful addition to our farmstead. They have gorgeous colouring on their feathers and opposed to the chickens, which are mostly nameless, (apart from the Orpington hens that I have named Daisy and Doris) the ducks have been named Twilight, Jemima and Daffy (of course).

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Jemima, Daffy & Twilight – few months old now

Something I didn’t know about the Muscovy breed is that they have claws on their feet for perching, which they now do anywhere and everywhere. When they were young they waddled round the grounds and eventually they began to fly and perch as high up as our barns, yet always staying within the boundaries of our property. It’s taken a while for them to gain our trust and now that they do, they will often waddle over with their tales wagging to see if there’s a treat on offer. A couple of weeks ago Twilight and Jemima began laying eggs. I’ve been told that duck eggs make wonderful sponges as well as great pavlovas. As a cake lover and the occasional baker (and I say ‘occasional’ because otherwise I’d eat too much) I had to put this to the test. And these large, creamy coloured, hard shell eggs made a tasty light sponge. However, if these Muscovy’s turn broody and sit on their eggs, we will have little ducklings! Naturally my daughter would be delighted with this. I have no idea how many ducklings they could produce, but we will not be able to keep them all!

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Muscovy ducks also make wonderful meat birds, but we shall refrain from eating them! They’re pets and egg producers—not dinner. They have a good temperament and make ideal pets as well as being low maintenance.

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Other facts about Muscovy Ducks:

The name Muscovy is said to be derived from an odour of musk which pervades the skin but which disappears when cooked.

Muscovy’s have very few ailments and are hardier than other domestic duck breeds.

A Muscovy ducks will lay a clutch of 15 -18 eggs (one per day) and then sit if allowed.

The Muscovy will graze the lawn a little and will sample succulent greens but two or three ducks in the average backyard are unlikely to cause much damage.

The above factual information was sourced from: http://www.burkesbackyard.com.au

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