The Campbell was first introduced to Britain around the turn of the century by Mrs Campbell. Her main aim was to produce a duck that would provide eggs all year round. This medium sized duck eats little food and if from a good line of breeding, will produce 300 plus eggs a year. Campbells are hardy ducks that will do well almost any where from gardens to commercial farms.
The campbell is quite a small duck about 4lbs. the carriage should be alert and slightly upright, the bill should be well set and in a straight line to the head. In all the campbell was meant to be the perfect egg laying duck and certainly does the job well. The Campbell has been bred in three colours.
White which is becoming more popular and hopefully will continue to do so, was breed as a sport of the khaki in about 1942. It has the same characteristics as the Khaki the only thing being different is the colour. The white also has the same laying abilities. Some of the eggs laid may me a light blue in colour. The ducklings should upon hatching be covered in yellow down with either a pink or orange bill. those that hatch with a orange bill may well loose the orange at a few weeks old. They will after about 5 weeks return to a bright orange, ducklings that have hatched with a pink bill will also change in bill colour after a few weeks to orange. The orange colour comes from lutine which is found in most leave greens.Grass being on of the best. It is therefore important that this is feed.
khaki is perhaps the most popular and favoured over the other colours by many people. The ducklings upon hatching should have a uniformed light brown covering of down.
Dark is the newest of the breed and was produced by Mr Humphrey around about the 1950's. The characteristics are the same as for the white and the Khaki. The Ducklings hatch with a dark brown almost black down. At present there are only a few breeders of this attractive colour. To sum it up the Campbell is a great all rounder that will not fail to please. They economical in terms of the amount they eat and the number of eggs they lay. Swimming water is not essential for this breed but if available they will love it.
DRAKE: Green bronze head, rump and neck with the rest of the plumage being a shade of khaki. Blue/green bill..
DUCK: Pencilled Khaki plumage all over with a slightly dark head and neck
DRAKE & DUCK : Both the drake and duck should be pure white with orange bills, legs, and feet. Ducklings can hatch with pink bills and feet, changing to orange at about 5 weeks old
A group of White Campbell ducklings. Note the different colours in the bill, they will all change to orange in a few weeks.
The Magpie is a very attractive duck that has strikingly bold markings. It was first bred in Wales in the 1920's and was bred to be a dual purpose breed ( eggs and meat). Very little is known how it was developed but its thought that it first appeared as a result of mixed flocks interbreeding way before the 1920's. The magpie is capable of laying 150 plus eggs a year.
The colouring of these birds can be black and white, blue and white or chocolate and white. The head and neck should be white with the appropriate colour cap covering the whole of the crown, the breast should be white and the back should be covered in a heart shape that extends to the wings and the tail. Because of its genetic make up to breed this bird to perfection is a real challenge. However if you don't mind the colour, the bird certainly won't and in some ways the miss match markings that occur is attractive in its own right and makes each duck unique.
These incorrect colours can prove to be very useful in breeding if bred from good parent stock as they will carry the correct gene colour. The Magpie is great for the garden and although they do like to paddle in water it is not essential. They also have the added advantage that they will go broody and make good mothers.
DRAKE & DUCK : Both the duck and drake are identical in colour. Overall body is white with chocolate brown cap and brown back and tail.
chocolate magpie ducklings. These ducklings are just one day old and hatched on the 3/3/07.
Over the last few years the Blue Swedish has gained in popularity. This breed of duck is admired for its striking appearance, a bird that has rich blue feathers cannot fail to leave a lasting impression.
The bird should be a rich blue all over with a white bib and, as dark a blue head as possible almost looking black. The eggs of which they produce around 150 a year are also attractive as they are also blue in colour. As with the Magpies the colouring is a challenge to achieve and every brood will also produce a certain percentage of black and silver. Despite these colours being a throw back I consider them to be as attractive and striking in appearance as the blue, and if used as breeding stock will improve the number of blue produced.
DUCK & DRAKE: Both sexes have slate blue plumage with a darker head and a white bib. The bill should be a shade of blue.
DUCK & DRAKE: Both sexes are black with a white bib, the bill should be blue/black. When the sun shines the feathers will appear to have a blue sheen.
The Call duck was originally bred in Britain by hunters who used them to attract wild ducks for shooting. Today they are no longer used for this purpose, instead they are kept by many people for their charms and individual characters. They soon become very friendly with all of the family making them ideal pets and ideal for those with limited space.
They also have the added advantage of being able to hatch and rear their own young. The eggs that Call ducks lay are small but they still taste great and they will lay about 100 a year. Call ducks have been bred in a variety of colours these include White which seems to be the most popular, Grey, Black, and Fawn to name but a few.
Calls come in many colours but white seems to the the most popular.
The cayuga duck takes its name from lake Cayuga in America where it was first discovered. the Cayuga first found its way to Britain in around 1871.early specimens of this breed were not the vibrant colour that we see today and has taken breeders many years to establish the iridescent bottle green feathers that we see today, the males are paretically attractive. The Cayuga is slowly increasing in popularity and will never fail to catch an on lookers eye
The cayuga is a very hardy breed,an excellent forager and a moderately good egg layer that if feed well will produce over 150 eggs year. The first few eggs may well be black or green this is due to the pigment that comes from the duck and does not effect the egg in any way. In fact this is a sign of good stock with plenty of pigment. after the first dozen or so the eggs will return to an off white or light green colour. The drakes also make very good table birds. The Cayuga is also a very good mother and will go broody if her eggs left in the nest. A single female can raise between 10 and 15 young at a time with no problems.
After a few years the adults may start to show signs of producing white feathers this does not effect the ducks ability to produce perfect off spring, Iv even seen a breeding pen full of white Cayuga's that have produced some fine young.
The Cayuga has striking bottle green feathers
A group of Cayuga ducklings about 4 weeks old. Note the light chest plate these soon go dark once they get adult feathers.