Can Ducks Kill Chickens? 5 Facts to Consider

Ducks seem calm and innocent birds from their appearance. Ducks, however, can kill your chickens. Duck and chickens have anatomical differences that make the two birds aggressive towards each other. The chances of your duck killing or injuring your chickens are thus pretty high.

Why Does Male Duck Attack My Chickens?

Male ducks are highly territorial. They don’t get uncomfortable with the presence of chickens and other birds. Drakes attack chickens to scare them away and to prove their dominance. If you have a male duck in your flock, be watchful to ensure the male duck doesn’t attack your chickens.

How to Protect Your Chickens from Ducks?

Although chickens and ducks can live together peacefully, ducks are likely to attack or even kill chickens. It is vital to protect your chickens from ducks to avoid constant fights between these two birds.  Check these tips on the best ways to protect your chickens from ducks.

– Keep your chicken separately from ducks

The ultimate solution to stopping constant fights between ducks and chickens is by keeping them separately. You can partition their coop with mesh wire to keep your birds separate. Partitioning, however, works for poultry owners with large cages.

Have a separate co0p for your chickens if the coop is too tiny for partitioning. Chickens love roosting high up at night and thus ensure their coop is high enough.  Provide perches in the coop.

Unlike chickens, ducks prefer nesting on the floor and thus ensure their coop has bedding. If you can’t afford to build another coop to keep your birds separately, ensure there is enough space to keep the birds from crossing each other frequently, ultimately protecting the chickens from ducks.

– Keep the ducks outdoors

Ducks like spending time outdoors while chickens thrive well indoors. It is prudent to have your ducks outdoors if you don’t have separate coops for chickens and ducks, to minimize the possibility of your ducks interacting with your chickens. That way, your chickens will be safe from ducks. Allow the ducks to enter the coop at night to keep them safe from predators.

– Don’t let your ducks feed together with the chickens

Ducks and chickens usually fight over food. Ducks, especially drakes, will fight chicken for food, leading to fights between your birds. Consider feeding your ducks separately from the chickens to avoid conflicts between your birds as they scramble for food.

Even if you are feeding your birds with the same food, it helps to feed them separately. Provide your birds with enough food to avoid competition over food if you must feed your ducks and chickens together.

Try therapeutic beak trimming

At times, it is hard to keep your chickens away from the ducks. They will always cross each other, mainly if you keep your birds outdoors. It helps to use therapeutic beak trimming, mainly for the aggressive ducks in the flock. Trimming will keep your ducks’ bills short, and they won’t harm your chickens through pecking.

– Eliminate the aggressive ducks from the flock

Not all ducks in your flock are aggressive. Some ducks could be docile and less likely to attack or kill your chickens. Such ducks can coexist peacefully with your broods. There is no urgent need to separate the ducks from the chicken in this case.

However, one or two ducks in the flock might show aggression towards the chickens. Consider eliminating such ducks by keeping the aggressive ducks in a separate cage or butchering them if the ducks are suitable for butchering.

Keep the chickens away from the drakes

Male ducks will at some point attack your chickens. Female ducks, however, are less likely to harm the chickens. Hence, ensure the drakes are away from the chickens to avoid conflicts between the ducks and the chickens.

Can Male Duck Kill a Rooster?

Yes, a male duck can kill a rooster, especially if the rooster provokes the male duck.  To avoid confrontation, keep your male ducks away from roosters since there will be constant altercations between the two male bird species.

Will Male Ducks Kill Chicks?

Yes, male ducks can kill your chicks due to their aggression. Male ducks can either kill chicks accidentally as they walk around or they can kill the chicks if the chicks are a threat to the male ducks. Either way, it helps to keep chicks away from male ducks to protect their lives.

Can You Keep Ducks and Chickens Together?

Yes, it is possible to keep ducks and chickens together. Although fighting is common between these two birds, they still get along well, especially if they grow together. Hence, keeping ducks and chicken together is a brilliant idea for poultry owners to increase their meat and egg production. Check these ideas on how you can keep ducks and chickens together.

– Make your coop suitable for both ducks and chickens

The ideal setup for ducks and chickens should appear like two different areas. The coop should have perches since chickens will roost at night to enjoy a peaceful and quiet sleep. Ducks are nesting birds, and hence ensure the coop has good bedding for your ducks.

Apart from the coop set up, ensure the cage is wide enough to prevent overcrowding, making the birds fight with each other over space.

– Give your birds enough food

Ducks and chickens will live together if there is no competition for food. The best thing about keeping ducks and chickens is that they eat the same types of food, so you don’t have to get different kinds of food items for your birds. Provide your ducks and chickens with plenty of food to stop them from fighting as they compete for food.

 – Avoid common health problems in birds

There are some common health problems that poultry owners experience while keeping chickens with ducks. Some of these problems include botulism, which is a condition that affects chickens and ducks due to drinking contaminated water.

Bumblefoot is also a common problem in chickens and ducks. Bacteria cause the disease, and it affects the feet of the birds. Call a vet if you suspect your birds could be having health issues.

 Conclusion

It is true ducks can kill chickens, thanks to their aggressive behavior. Notwithstanding this, ducks and chickens can live together harmoniously without fighting. Hence, consider keeping ducks and chickens together.

Chickens   Ducks   Updated: August 8, 2022
avatar Hey, I'm James, a hardworking homesteader for more than 30 years. I enjoy the feeling of accomplishment that comes from tending my flock. I've raised chickens and ducks for eggs and meat for many years. I also have experience with other poultry too.

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