Today I invited three breeding Muscovy Ducks to the homestead, Lil Wheezy, Stormy and Eos. After a lot of research, I decided these where the ducks for me. They are my number one pick for livestock on a small urban homestead. Let me tell you why!
Noise is a huge concern when you are an urban homesteader. Loud roosters are not ideal with neighbors all around. Muscovy ducks are silent, or very close to it. The males make a soft wheezing noise, and the females a cute chirp that is also very soft. The loudest part about them is their wings when they flap in the bath. They have rich, creamy eggs and are wonderful mothers. It's a win-win whether I eat the eggs or let the hens hatch them. They are very large birds and their meat is delicious. Its different parts have been compared to top sirloin, ham or veal. It is very lean and one of the healthiest meats on the market. The males weigh up to 20 pounds. A single bird can feed a lot of people.
What amazed me when reading about these birds is that they hunt the flies that swarm around their droppings. I was looking forward to seeing if it was true. Today I got to see them in action. They ate every fly that came into their temporary enclosure. Muscovys are amazing foragers and will eat flies, small slugs, snails, worms and even frogs. They caught most of their own food today. I am going to let them roam the garden during the day to rid it of bugs and to let them eat the grass. I am also looking forward to feeding them kitchen scraps.
Interesting fact on Muscovy ducks, they are the only duck in captivity that is not related to a Mallard duck. You can breed other ducks with Muscovys but you will get a sterile duck. The same way a horse and donkey make a mule. Their History is what got my attention.
Muscovy ducks have been domesticated for centuries, first by the Native Americans. When Columbus arrived in the Bahamas he brought some back to Europe on the ship Santa Maria. They are favored for their distinctive tasting meat, that is reminiscent of roast beef, making it quite popular.
Stormy bathing in her new home.
Muscovys are easy to breed, multipurpose and very quiet. That makes them the perfect Urban Homestead duck. I am excited to have a great start with good breeding stock, and to see for myself what raising them is like. I already enjoy being around them and hope that taming them goes well.
Every plant and animal I add to my homestead brings me one step closer to being independent and free of the system. I am passionate about finding alternative ways to live in this world. To make my own way by my own hands. I want to consciously evolve to be a more intentional human and connected being.