My ducks do NOT have a predictable laying season. My chickens function like clockwork - they kick into high gear in mid-March, grow their productiveness until May, and then as the heat kicks in, they slow down, they start to molt in August and September, dropping their production and in mid-October, practically come to a halt for the winter.
My ducks - they do what they want. I've tried to attribute it to weather, to stress, to flock interruptions. Nah. They do what they want. Respect their authority. In past years they have laid well in the fall, or through the whole winter. This year, they are mimicking the chickens, and started to lay like crazy in March, and are continuing to do so.
I have a lot of eggs right now!
I posted several years ago about how the nutrition in duck eggs differs from chicken eggs. There are several boosts in duck eggs, including more protein per gram, better fats and Omega 3 fatty acids. They have more albumen in their white, which is what makes eggs get fluffy when you whip them, so they are a favorite to bakers and chefs.
The other interesting note for duck eggs, is that there is a relatively common allergy to a protein in chicken eggs. If this is you, and you have suffered from not being able to eat eggs - consult your allergist and see if duck eggs are for you. I love them. Many of my customers who are allergic to chicken eggs can eat duck eggs and are SO happy that they can eat eggs again! You can read more about duck egg nutrition and allergy information here.
And as a special added bonus - duck eggs have a thicker shell, and a thicker membrane inside the shell. This allows them to stay fresh longer, so you can store them longer. They also peel really really well when hard boiled. One of the worst things about fresh, pastured eggs is that the shell wants to stick and it makes peeling hard boiled eggs very difficult. I often end up with egg salad when I really wanted deviled eggs! But not with duck eggs! They come out perfect every time.
So stock up now while the ladies are still laying! Bake up Some fluffy cakes, pack some deviled eggs for a picnic, and enjoy the nutrient dense duck eggs.
If you want some of your own Welsh Harlequin or Pekin ducklings, ask me in advance for hatching eggs. All our eggs are fertile, but the ones for hatching don't get washed and I collect them for you that very day so they are super fresh and ready for your incubator!