KW Homestead

Emma & Jason's pasture raised poultry, homesteading thoughts, and wild adventures.

Month: March 2016

Cayuga Ducks for Sale: Your Own Backyard Duck Eggs!

We currently have a small flock of Cayuga ducks for sale. About 15 ducks (females) and 3 drakes are available for your family!

The Cayuga duck is a heritage breed that has been recognized by the American Poultry Association since 1874. The breed is an American breed, originating in New York state. They are prized for their plumage… They have black feathers that are iridescent green, purple, and blue! Such beautiful birds!

They are a duck unlike other ducks. As they age (even during their first year) and they loose feathers and grow new ones, their feathers grow back white (like an aging human!). Often by the end of their life span, they are all white, with black beaks and feet. Males are a little larger than females, and they have a curly tail feather that females do not have. Males are also much quieter (sometimes voiceless), and the females are thought to be less noisy than other common breeds of ducks like the Pekin.

Cayuga ducks

A Cayuga drake (back) and duck (front). Photo courtesy of www.purelypoultry.com

Their eggs are black or gray, and the pigment generally fades as the laying season continues. By the end of the laying season and as the years go on, your Cayuga duck might be laying eggs that only look off-white in color.

With all this information, you may be wondering…

Why Should I Raise a Few Back Yard Ducks for My Family?

  • Duck eggs are more nutritious than chicken eggs.
  • Ducks are easy to keep in a fenced backyard. They can only fly a few feet high, unlike chickens. They are also super easy to herd from place to place, like sheep. They often think as a unit and like to hang out with other duck buddies.
  • They are great for gardens because they do not scratch up your ground or yard. They simply mat the grasses down as they walk around.
  • They are great for pest control. They love slugs, bugs, and even larger critters!
  • Males are not aggressive, like roosters. You can have a small breeding flock of ducks without worrying about a rooster attacking you or making tons of noise!

So, now you’re interested in having some ducks of your own. Fantastic! But now you might be wondering…

What Do I Need to Care for My Ducks?

  • A space to close them in at night to keep predators away. Preferably not a house, since they much prefer to be under the open sky with a small rain cover. The rain doesn’t bother a duck, of course!
  • Duck food! We sell the Non-GMO Feed that we use for our laying flock. Ask us about it!
  • Lots of water! Ducks not only drink a lot of water, but they also love to play in it. We recommend a nipple water system for drinking (so they don’t get it dirty) and a baby pool for playing in!
  • A place to lay eggs. Some cozy straw laid out in their enclosure should suffice. Ducks tend to lay in the early hours of the morning so you should find your eggs when you go to let them out each day!

Who wouldn’t want some family ducks, am I right?

If you’re interested in purchasing Cayuga ducks from our homestead, email us (ourochreway@gmail.com) or give us a call (336.419.0724)! Cayuga heritage ducks are $30/bird.

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Black and Gray Duck Eggs: What EGGactly Do You Mean?

As you know, we raise a variety of duck breeds. Some of our ducks are raised for meat and others are raised for egg production. When you look out over our land, you see white ducks (our meat ducks, called Pekins), dark brown ducks (egg ducks, called Khaki Campbells), light brown and multi-colored ducks (egg ducks, called Golden Layers) and black and green iridescent ducks (a multi-purpose breed, called Cayugas).

I was drawn to the Cayugas immediately. Seeing their beautiful green feathers and learning more about their breed, intrigued me! The most amazing thing about them is their eggs! They lay dark colored eggs but the color of their eggs change over time.

Cayuga eggs

Black and gray Cayuga duck eggs. Photo courtesy of https://www.pinterest.com/cmwannabe/

Their first eggs are generally black but they can also be dark gray. The more they lay eggs, the lighter their eggs become. And the very interesting thing about the pigment of their eggs is that the pigment isn’t as permanent as colored chicken eggs (like the green egg laying Americauna birds). With chicken eggs, the pigment stays on the shell even after eggs are cleaned. The pigment on Cayuga eggs, on the other hand, can be partially wiped off during the egg washing process, leaving you with an egg that has gray smears on the outside, rather than an all-black egg.

The end result looks funny, but the inside of the egg looks just like any other duck egg and tastes delicious, just the same!

Now that our Cayuga ducks have started laying eggs more regularly, we are offering our Cayuga eggs for $8.50/dozen and $5.50/half-dozen. These eggs are a novelty to cook with, and kids love looking at the crazy shades of gray that appear in their dozen! Don’t forget to try dying these multicolored, gray eggs for Easter… Your end result might just look tie-dyed!

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