- Currently 100
Other name(s): Golden Hybrid
Scientific name: Anas platyrhynchos domesticus
Country / Place of origin: United States
History: The Golden 300 Hybrid Duck is a crossbred, "sex-link" duck developed by U.S. poultry breeder Metzer Farms. According to Metzer Farms, "In 1996 we developed the Golden 300 Hybrid as they lay more and larger eggs than the Khaki Campbell duck and have a calmer temperament with a higher fertility...we developed the Golden 300 Hybrid by crossing and utilizing the attributes of different duck breeds." "The Golden 300 Hybrid can be sexed at any age by its color as the males are shades of black and the females are shades of brown. Unfortunately, they do not retain this characteristic in future generations. Their progeny will hatch in blacks, yellows and browns with no relationship between sex and color. Some of our customers wanted a white bird that laid as well as the Golden 300 Hybrid. In 1999 we developed the White Layer to meet this demand. The production of these two birds is identical on our farm."
Current Uses: Superior egg production of 250 -300 eggs / year. The eggs are primarily white, though approximately 8% are blue/green.
Appearance: Golden 300 Hybrid drakes have dark brown and black feathers, and orange feet and bills. The hens are lighter than drakes, and have rich khaki feathers, black feet and bills.
Average weight: 4 - 4.5 lbs.
Lifespan: 9 - 12 years
Diet: If your duck has access to a natural pond they may find much of their diet on the pond. You can help provide a natural diet my growing duck weed, krill and other pond organisms. They will also enjoy eating your slugs and snails for you. They will also need an un-medicated waterfowl maintenance diet and fresh greens. It is important to know that bread is not a healthy food for any duck. In fact, ducks that eat large amounts of bread (for example in city parks) suffer from serious health problems including bone deformities.
Housing: Many owners of large properties with natural ponds enjoy keeping free range ducks. However there are some precautions that must be taken to have healthy ducks thrive on a natural pond and not get taken by predators. The pond needs to be large, at least a quarter acre in size for 25 ducks. To prevent botulism outbreaks it should be filtered naturally by plants or artificially. If at all possible the pond should be drained regularly as well. Keeping the edge of the pond dry with gravel or other means will also help to prevent a botulism outbreak. The ducks will need a night shelter that protects them from predators. During the day free range ducks are still at risk of becoming predator food. Herd protector dogs or geese can help keep your flock safe.
Health issues: There are several health conditions common to ducks that owners need to be aware of. Most can be prevented with good care. From their eating habits they can easily get internal parasites and may need regular deworming. Botulism is another disease that duck owners should be aware of. Botulism outbreaks occur around muddy and wet areas with decaying matter when the days and nights are hot. Botulism toxicity causes paralysis, starting in the legs and moving up the body to the head, and can lead to dead. The only treatment is to support the duck with lots of regular fluids via tubing to flush their system of the toxin. Botulism can be prevented by keeping their living areas free of mud and rotting debris that attracts flies. With a proper living environment and good vet care ducks can often live long healthy lives.
Behavior / Temperament / Activity level: