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Bantam Silkie Ducks

$40.00$90.00

Country of Origin: United States

​Bird Size: 28 to 38 ounces

Primary Use: Egg

Egg Production: Good

Egg Size: Medium

Egg Color: Blue

Temperament: Friendly, High Strung

​Hardiness: All Temps

Type of Environment: Small Range

Conservation Status: Extremely Rare

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SKU: bantam-silkie-ducks Category: Product ID: 11189

Welcome to the world of bantam or mini ducks! These are similar to call ducks as in size but in the category of bantam duck. These are charming little ducks who are good mothers and excellent foragers. They will forage for slugs, grubs, beetles and any other insects they come across on their explorations. They would make great little foragers in your garden or orchards!  They are gentle and inquisitive birds that can make excellent pets. They thrive in all weather conditions, but in the winter when in the teens or below, they tend to be in their housing more often, however we have not noticed that here in Vermont, they are outside most of the time. These little cuties can be raised by all!  They come in several colors: black, snowy, dusky, grey, and white.  We currently have: black, blue-bibbed, black-bibbed, chocolate, wild, and dusky. They are not prolific egg producers, but perfect size for an omlet or snack. Their eggs are green-blue colored, generally the same color as Cuyuga duck eggs. The eggs are not as large as a typical duck egg but not as small as a chicken egg. They are a great medium size. Bantam Silkie Ducks weigh between 30-38 ounces or 2 pounds, slightly smaller than a Mallard. They require housing, feed and fresh clean water. Predator protection is necessary, please consider this when raising and keeping. They tend to be tidy little ducks if you can keep their pen clean and provide plenty of room and shade. They can be flighty (yes they can fly!) and a little high strung, but patience and handling would make them friendly and easily tame.

They are called “Silkie” for a reason.  They have a soft fur-like quality to them without the extreme fluffiness of a Silkie Chicken. These Bantam Silkie Ducks have an unusual feature when Homozygous for the Silkie gene. It causes feathers to be longer, lighter and lacking the hook-like barbicels normal feathers have. Barbicels are part of a velcro-like system in conjunction with barbs and barbules that allows the feathers to stick together, creating a smooth surface. Not all Silkie ducks have this gene at this time in our program so you will get both the Silkie feathering and smooth feathering. This is very normal. Why? The mutation that causes their unique feathering also causes the shell and outer membrane of their eggs to be thicker. Hatching does not come easy to Homozygous birds. Which is why it is necessary to retain Heterozygous birds in the breed- they don’t share that issue. We need more breeders and hobbyists to have these very rare ducks to preserve their unique qualities. They are not at this time recognized by the American Poultry Association. They can be shown at most poultry shows and we would love to see more stewards of this breed.

History

 Bantam Silkie Ducks were developed by Darrell Sheraw of Pennsylvania. According to Darrell Sheraw his original silkies were a surprise product of white and snowy Mallards in the 1980’s. From there it seems like Holderread developed several colors. There is not much history that we can find on these rare ducks. This is a relatively new duck breed.

Pre-ordered adults and hatchlings may be picked up by appointment. To safeguard our birds from exposure to disease brought in by visitors, in accordance with the provisions of the National Poultry Improvement Plan, areas where birds are kept are off limits. However you are welcome to look at all the breeds and interactions, it is a site to see.

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