Meet The Ducklings
We just recently added four ducklings to our family here in Fallbrook. It was a unanimous decision that we had to have black and white ducks to match our black and white dogs and cat. That being said, three of the four ducklings are Swedish Ducks who will grow up to be black and white in color. The fourth duckling is the odd man out–he is a Pekin Duck who will grow up to be all white. In permaculture, the saying is if you have too many slugs or snails on your property, you have too few ducks. After collecting hundreds of snails that were munching away at our citrus trees, we decided it was time to bring these little guys home.
There are many different benefits to owning ducks as a permaculturist. Not only are ducks incredible for pest control, but they also provide onsite manure, can be kept in the same coop as chickens, tend to have fewer health problems than chickens, and due to their flocking instincts, they are easily herded from pen to pen. While they are fantastic foragers, they do not have a habit of tearing apart your land as chickens sometimes do. Best of all, they lay eggs that are known to surpass those of chickens in both quantity and size.
Hungry ducklings and a seemingly endless supply of snails, of course, means lots of duck droppings. In order to avoid very frequent, messy clean ups, we will have to invest in developing a good sized pond. We are in the process of gaining as much knowledge as possible about "quaquaponics" so we can create a hygienic and sustainable pond that allows the duck droppings to act as fertilizer for the aquatic plants, which then turn into duck food. All in all, we're very excited about our new additions!