If you ever consider raising ducks, you should be looking at multiple aspects. Are they suitable for the backyard with large land and pond? Is this the breed you want to raise?
How much will it cost you to raise a particular breed? Numerous questions arise at this thought.
Nevertheless, duck meat remains to be our favorite over the years. But, not only is the meat mouth-watering, but the eggs are tempting too.
In this article, we’ll be concentrating on the less spoken of topic, duck eggs. We have listed the best egg-laying ducks that exist, and we suggest you take a look. And this might answer a few questions you have in mind.
11 Best Ducks for Eggs – In Order of Our Preference
When it comes to duck eggs, we make no compromise on the quantity, quality, and availability. So we have listed them according to our preference.
This is a cross-breed of female Indian Runner with male Rouen duck breeds, originated in England. In the early 1900s, it got first introduced, and by the 1940s, it gained importance in the United States. They are presented as the best of both breeds. Not only they lay around 280-340 eggs per year, but they also yield juicy, tender meat.
These ducks start laying eggs at the age of six months. White to cream-colored, flavorful yolks, weighing 2.5- 2.75 ounces per egg.
Coming to how they look and why the name. The Khaki Campbell breed has a tan color plumage (feathers) overall. Blueish-green colored bills and greenish heads in males are a few identifying characteristics.
The nature of these birds is quite comforting and friendly. They patiently sit their eggs, stay with the ducklings until they can feed on their own. This duck breed is quite a robust breed, which can handle any climatic situation.
- Lay about 280-340 good quality, flavorful eggs every year
- Very low maintenance, as they are free foragers.
- Weighing 3.5 to 5.5-pound birds, yield good quality meet
- Friendly yet sturdy birds, best fir for your backyard
- Post sitting the eggs, and they do not pay much attention to the ducklings as a mother
This breed was originated in 2500 B.C. in Beijing, China.
Although Pekin ducks are well known for their meat’s texture and quality, they also lay around 200-300 eggs per year. Each egg weighs approximately 3 ounces.
They start giving eggs since the age of 5 or 6 months. The warm nature of these birds makes them excellent mothers, but only once the eggs are hatched. They are very distracted sitters and often leave the eggs mid-way, which destroys the eggs. So to hatch Pekin ducks from eggs, artificial brooding is required.
These are free-range foragers, which means they like to find their food in grassland or feed on worms, weeds from nearby water bodies.
Mature Pekin ducks weight around 10-11 pounds. They have beautiful pure white plumage and yellow bills.
Pekins are the best breed to domesticate and add to your backyard farm.
- Lays around 250 eggs on an average in a year
- Sturdy but friendly ducks, easy to maintain
- They like to forage
- Very careless brooders
In the early twentieth century, this breed first originated in England.
Later in the 1970s, they got introduced in the United States. It is a cross-breed of the Indian Runner and Belgian Huttegem ducks. They are generally medium-sized and weighs about 5-6.5 pounds. They lay over 240- 280 eggs per year.
The eggs have a variety of colors- white, blue, green, and cream. Extraordinarily flavorful egg yolk, as these free-ranging birds forage on weeds, greens, and worms.
You can recognize the breed by its broken white and any colored (usually black and blue) plumage.
This multi-purpose breed is also famous for its less fat and equally flavorful meat like the Pekins, besides laying good quality eggs. Their head is oval-shaped with a concave bill.
They can survive under every climatic condition. Hence they are a preferred breed.
- Calm yet hardy ducks, who love to feed on greens and worms across grassland
- Good quality meat as well as good quantity eggs
- Can be accustomed to any climatic condition
- Have a tendency to brood
These ducks are also popularly known as Runners, originated in Indonesia. You can easily recognize a Runner by its cylindrical body and upright position.
These ducks feed on weeds, bugs, snails, insects extensively. This feature makes them the right pet for the rice farmers.
Besides this, they lay 260-300 good quality; chicken sized eggs throughout the year. The eggs are usually blueish- green in color.
They are relatively lightweight, 4-4.5 pounds at maturity. This makes them quite active and can jump higher than other duck breeds.
They do not give good meat, but the eggs are flavorful and large.
- Can withstand both hot and cold climate
- A good quantity of eggs, with significantly less maintenance
- Friendly ducks, good for the farm
- They need extensive open farmlands to forage
These are quiet, calm, and sweet-natured ducks. They do not make much noise or disturbance, making them a favorite.
Structurally speaking, they are beautiful black patterns/patches on the white plumage.
This makes them look like wearing a hat. And to top that, they are excellent foragers, so you can well imagine the egg yolks’ flavor. The most attractive part of their eggs is the color of eggs- white, cream, blue, and green.
They weigh anything around 5-7 pounds at maturity. Like many other breeds, they too can handle extreme climatic conditions.
- Lays close to 300 beautiful looking eggs
- One of the best foragers
- Quite and very less disturbing pet
- They do not give meat very well
One of the oldest breeds available originated in England in the 1940s.
They are a combined breed of excellent egg layers and extraordinary meat. These stocky, heavy-looking ducks weigh up to 10 pounds when they grow.
It is one of the best egg laying ducks, giving around 250-270 white eggs every year. Each egg weighs about 2-3 ounces. And they start laying eggs as soon as they reach five months old. They occasionally sit their eggs.
The body color of these birds is quite like the Rouen breed. They are not noisy, but they can fly pretty well than other duck breeds. So you may have to be little cautions if you wish to pet this breed.
However, if they are fed well, they do not fly away despite the free-ranging and foraging in the land and water bodies.
- Calm, domesticated beautiful ducks
- Yields good meat and a pretty good number of eggs
- Can tolerate different climates
- They can fly short distances
These breeds are considered critically endangered species, initially originated in Wales. They are taken to be multi-purpose, suitable for both meat and eggs.
They are usually lightweight, weighing just 5-6 pounds.
These ducks give around 300 large cream-colored eggs per year, often raised for ducklings by the females.
They are primarily raised around the globe for the delicious meat. For beginners, this is a perfect breed to consider.
They are very curious, calm, and easy to pet ducks.
- Large quantity of eggs every year
- Good mothers to incubate the eggs
- Amazing quality of meat
- Soon to be an endangered breed if not preserved
The Cayuga is a native American breed, which originated in Lake Cayuga in New York. However, some may argue otherwise.
This is also a cross-breed between the East Indies and the Rouen breed. They weigh around 5-7 pounds at maturity.
They lay 150-200 eggs per year. They are famous for their egg color- charcoal, dark green, and violet-black.
They do not forage well and hence will depend on you for food. Like most other duck breeds, they also can bear the heat and cold climate. They are also calm and gentle. Hence it is the right choice for your farm and even around small children.
Structurally, they are extraordinary, also known as ornamental ducks, for a reason. The Cayuga has black plumage, which also looks beetle green under perfect lighting and a black bill.
- Ornamental and beautiful looking
- Lays average number of eggs
- Calm and friendly, great pets around children
- Do not forage on their own, depends on external feed.
As the name suggests, the ducks have originated in Sweden, Pomerania, to be exact. They are also popularly known as Blue Swedish. In the 1800s, they reached the United States.
They look like wearing a suit, white chest, and black body with slate bills in terms of appearance. Sometimes there can be dark blue (grey) color ducks in this breed.
They lay a decent number of white eggs every year (120-180). The females often tend to incubate the eggs. They are massive birds weighing 5- 6.5 pounds, which yields good meat when butchered.
Due to their shape and color of plumage, they are difficult to be spotted by predators.
- Famous for both meat and eggs.
- Beautiful looking ducks, good for the exhibition.
- Friendly, calm yet sturdy ducks
- They often tend to brood the eggs
The Saxony is a true multi-breed that was introduced to fulfill all kinds of purpose in Germany in the 1930s. After going through a wipeout in World War 2, they again immersed in the 1950s and reached the United States in 1984. It is a cross between Pomeranian, Pekin, and Rouen duck breeds.
They are pretty good layers, give around 200 eggs per year, and incubate the eggs. They weigh approximately 7-8 pounds; hence they can be considered a good meat source. In just ten weeks, they reach butchering weight.
Saxonies are lively, alert, and functional. Drakes have a charcoal gray-blue head and burgundy chest while the females have fawn color plumage.
They are experts in finding their food, in whatever little area they are left in.
- Excellent multi-purpose breed for both meat and eggs
- Excellent foragers
- Calm and adjustable
- Make a lot of noise and disturbance.
The Rouen is a pure breed that originated in France. This breed is misunderstood often to be its wild equivalent- Mallard. They are mostly considered for meat, but they are also average egg layers.
When you feed them well, they tend to give around 140-180 eggs. The eggs are smaller compared to the multi-breed ducks.
They are large and grows slower than general other breeds, around 6-10 pounds in maturing. If you want to compare, they are three times larger than Mallards. In terms of appearance, males have purple-colored plumage, and females have brown patterns on the body with a shiny green head.
They can be easily domesticated and hefty ducks who like to free-range. Their meat is also very desirable as its mostly non-greasy lean meat.
- They yield both excellent quality eggs and meat
- Free-ranging birds and easily pet
- One of the best quality of meat
- They take time to reach maturity
That has been quite a long list of duck breeds. We could not contain ourselves from making this information available to you, as we understand, this is important.
Duck eggs are usually white, but ducks who free-range and forage widely, the egg’s color becomes beautiful, and the yolks delectable. Ducks grow faster than chicken, and the meat is much tenderer than chicken.
If you think of considering duck poultry, we suggest you go ahead as it will not disappoint you if you make the right choice.