Just in case you didn’t read Monday’s post, one of our neighbours reported us to the city complaining that our ducks have been ‘trespassing’ and eating crops, this isn’t strictly true, but it has meant that we need to ensure that our ducks do not leave our property at all.
We knew decisions were needed about our duck population as we started the year with 13 ducks, 3 males and 10 females; right now we have 37 ducks, 21 males and 16 females – in other words way too many, and way too many males.
We keep Muscovy ducks primarily because they are excellent fly control, and being surrounded by dairy farms the flies can be brutal. We also planned on raising them for our freezer as Muscovy duck is tasty and low in fat, I have read of it being compared to veal and to steak.
Given that I won’t buy meat that I can’t be sure got to live a good life, we can’t shop in the ‘regular’ stores so raising our own meat is one of the few options left to us, it is also a step towards our goal of being as self-sufficient as we can, and one of our ways of fighting back.
This year with our excess of males we cannot just sell them all as breeding stock, especially given that we need to get the population down quickly. There is only one abattoir in our area that is licensed for ducks and they only ‘do’ ducks in November for one week. Fortunately we have been lucky enough to get an appointment for next week, which means that as it is being processed in a government licensed, inspected plant we will be able to sell the meat.
This type of decision is always hard, but with sending these ducks to be processed we are able to offer people who cannot raise their own the option of purchasing meat that has led a natural, good life. If you are like me you may not be content to just take the word of a stranger, if that is the case and you would like to come and visit our little farm and see the life our ducks live you are more than welcome.
Duck will be available from next weekend, I believe the ‘going rate’ to be $15 per kg and an average weight to be around the 2kg mark, although this is our first time so we will know more about weights next week. If you are interested please get in touch. We will only have 15 birds for sale and will work on a first come first served basis.
For anyone worrying about our bylaw/neighbour problem, we have been keeping bylaw up to date with what we are doing. We have advised them that half of the ducks will be gone by the end of next week. Steve also mentioned that he is at work during the day so has few daylight hours to work on things here, they were understanding and gave us a couple of weeks, after which we will invite them back to see the changes. They did say that there had been several calls, a couple a week, from different people! We really aren’t sure what to make of that.
This post is part of Fight Back Friday, why don’t you head over and check out some of the other shared wisdom.