When you get yourself some new chickens, chances are that your neighbors are instantly going to ask you what breed you went for.
That’s because different chicken breeds are meant for different tasks altogether. Maybe you want a big chicken breed that you can raise for its meat production.
Or, maybe you want a good egg laying chicken breed that can produce as many as 280 eggs per year. Depending on your needs, you can go for different breeds altogether.
Ducks are the same, even though not many people acknowledge this. What we mean by that is the fact that depending on which breed you go for, you will get a different experience altogether.
And yet, whenever you get yourself a new duck, almost nobody asks you what breed you went for, as they almost always assume that ducks are universal when it comes to what they offer.
But this couldn’t be any further from the truth. So, let us dive deep into the many different options you may go for as we list off the top 15 best duck breeds you could go for.
In this list, we will be primarily looking into the top 15 best duck breeds for eggs, so if you’re looking for a good duck to roast by the end of the year, this is not the right article for you.
Regardless, let us start off our list with the following:
15. Gold Star Hybrid
First up on our list we have this relatively new breed that was developed in the Murray McMurray Hatchery.
While it is generally unknown exactly which breeds went into the making of the Gold Star Hybrid, what we do know is that the process was considered a success.
The male Gold Star Hybrid ducks are known for having dark shades while the females have brown shades running across their bodies. As such, you can quickly tell the difference between the males and the females based on the shades they have.
It’s not all that large of a breed, being capable of growing up to be around 4 to 6lbs heavy. But, where it excels is its egg laying ability, as a typical Gold Star Hybrid can lay as many as 200 to 290 white eggs every year.
14. Crested Duck
Crested ducks are known as some of the best duck breeds to own as pets. That’s because they are so friendly and easy to train.
On top of that, the Crested Duck breed is one of the oldest duck breeds around, with its origins having been traced back to around 2,000 years ago or so.
This is a fairly large breed, weighing in almost 7 pounds in total once they reach maturity. They can produce as many as 200 eggs every year.
Sadly enough, if both of the parents have the crested gene then less than 25% of the clutch won’t even hatch.
The Rouen is a duck breed that’s colored like the mallard. The only real difference between it and the standard mallard is the fact that the Rouen ducks are way larger.
In fact, the Rouen duck is one of the largest types of duck you can find out there, with most of them reaching a weight of 9 to 10lbs each.
They are known for being quite friendly and docile, which makes them the perfect choice for new duck owners.
This breed can also produce around 200 white eggs per year too, making it a great dual-purpose breed to have around your farm.
The Swedish duck breed is known for its signature white feathered chest. On top of that, this breed also has blue/grey feathers that make it one of the most beautiful breeds you can find.
Despite the fact that they were originally developed in Germany, they carry the name “Swedish” because the recognized government at the time was the kingdom of Sweden.
Most Swedish ducks are blue, but you can also come across the occasional brown and black varieties if you look far enough. Also, it is said that Daffy Duck was actually meant to be a Swedish drake.
Swedish ducks lay only around 130 to 180 eggs per year, but these eggs are quite large, weighing in at around 65 to 90g each.
11. Welsh Harlequin
We only ever saw a handful of Welsh Harlequins in our life, and for good reason too. They are considered to be critically endangered, so actually raising one is quite an honor nowadays.
If you can get your hands on one though, you’ll be happy to hear that the Welsh Harlequin duck is a dual-purpose breed that is perfectly suited for any farmhouse out there.
They were originally developed back in Wales in order to take over the egg-laying market. As such, the breeders managed to manipulate its genes enough for it to produce as many as 300 white eggs every year.
On top of that, Welsh Harlequin ducks are known for being some of the best brooders out there. So, if you need a broody mama to take care of the ducklings, you can’t go wrong with a Welsh Harlequin.
10. Silver Appleyard
The Silver Appleyard breed originates from England and it is known as one of the most docile and easy-going breeds on the market right now.
As such, many people choose to raise this breed as a family pet. While it is more than capable of fitting in that role though, that’s not what its original role was meant to be.
After all, these are large ducks that can get as heavy as 8 to 9lbs each, which instantly makes them great choices for a quick roast.
Not only that but their meat is also quite delicious, as it is considered to be a bit of a delicacy in some areas of Europe.
Being a dual-purpose breed, you can also expect it to be quite a proficient egg layer at that too, being capable of laying anywhere between 220 and 265 extra-large eggs every passing year.
9. Khaki Campbell
The Khaki Campbell breed is by far one of the most common duck breeds you’ll find in America. In fact, we would argue that you can’t find a single hatchery around the US that doesn’t have at least a batch of them lying around.
The reason for that is simple, the Khaki Campbell is just a great universal choice that manages to earn a golden star in every category available.
First and foremost, this is a pretty large breed that will yield quite a lot of flavorful meat once fully grown.
Second of all, the Khaki Campbell duck breed is capable of laying as many as 280 eggs per year, making it one of the best choices if you want the best of both worlds.
Third of all, it is one of the hardiest breeds around, being capable of surviving in pretty much any weather conditions you can think of.
We would argue that the Magpie duck breed is by far one of the most underrated breeds out there.
That’s because Magpie ducks can produce quite a handful of large and colorful eggs every year, with most of them laying around 280 eggs with ease.
They are nowhere near as popular as most of the other options on this list though, which makes them quite hard to find.
But if you can manage to come across a batch of Magpie ducks, we fully support the idea of you starting a Magpie farm in your backyard.
Even though they’re not the largest birds out there, being capable of growing up to be anywhere between three and five pounds in total, their meat is exceptionally tasty so you will not regret your choice anytime soon.
On top of that, they are a great source of protein, so if you’re looking to add more muscle to your frame, Magpie ducks may be the answer you were looking for.
7. Indian Runner
Most people would probably be shocked to hear that we did not put this breed at the top of our list, which should already tell you just how beloved it is by the community.
But what’s so great about it? Well, for starters, this breed can lay as many as 300 eggs per year, and what’s all the better about it is the fact that its eggs are all beautifully colored.
So, if you like the idea of having a full basket full of green or blue duck eggs ready every morning, you should definitely consider going for an Indian Runner duck.
The Indian Runner duck is also known for its unique look, as most people describe it as a skinny duck that was raised by penguins in the North Pole.
Regardless, the Indian Runner duck is a top choice that you shouldn’t miss out on, with its only real downfall being its overall size.
This is nowhere near the largest breed out there, with most of them barely reaching three pounds each. Even so, this can work in their favor if you don’t have a lot of room in your backyard to store your ducks in.
This is a dual-purpose duck breed that usually weighs somewhere between 8 to 9lbs each. It is a traditional German breed that was bred to be the perfect answer for anyone looking for a hefty sized duck that can also lay more than a handful of eggs per year.
Thus, the Saxony duck came into being. It quickly caught on due to the fact that even though it can lay as many as 240 eggs per year, it also doubles down as one of the heaviest dual-purpose breeds out there.
Most Saxony ducks actually weigh 8 to 9lbs each, and on top of that they are quite friendly and low-maintenance creatures that you will never grow bored of petting.
Their eggs are also beautifully white, blue and green, depending on the duck itself of course. Do keep in mind however that they do grow much slower than other breeds and that they’re also late egg layers at that too.
The American Pekin is actually a Chinese duck breed that is believed to be around 2,000 years old at the very least. This instantly makes it one of the oldest duck breeds we still have around us today.
On top of that, it also means that the breed is one of the most trusted picks you could make as it has been around us for all these years.
Pekin ducks are a dual-purpose breed that can get as heavy as 7 to 9lbs each, but even so they are still considered to be a great choice around children due to how docile they are.
Most Pekin ducks can lay as many as 200 eggs per year, and on top of that the eggs are known for being quite large.
So, if you want a time-tested breed around your household that will not disappoint you anytime soon, you should consider getting yourself a Pekin duck.
Commonly referred to as the “Masked Ducks”, these unique looking ducks are known for originating from Honduras and Nicaragua, being one of the most famous breeds there.
It didn’t take long for them to become one of the most popular breeds in the world right now either, as the Muscovy breed is one of the largest breeds that you’ll ever lay your eyes on.
Most Muscovy ducks can get as heavy as 9 to 10lbs each, but you will also get the occasional 13lbs monster around your household too.
Not only are they massive, but their eggs are just as large too. They can lay anywhere between 180 to 200 eggs per year, making them quite proficient dual-purpose pets.
Last but not least we would like to mention the fact that the Muscovy duck is known for being one of the hardiest breeds you’ll come across. They can actually survive through most climates out there, but do keep one thing in mind, they can also fly.
This will make them quite a hassle to take care of if you are a beginner and you don’t know how to clip their wings properly.
Cayuga ducks make their way up on our list here specifically for the unique coloring on their eggs. After all, have you ever seen a duck lay charcoal to black colored eggs before? We didn’t think so.
On top of that, they will also lay plenty of different shades of grey eggs too, making them some of the most unique ducks you could get.
Cayuga ducks are also some of the most beautiful looking duck breeds, although interestingly enough nobody really knows where they originate from.
Some people believe that everything started in the US for the Cayuga ducks, but this has yet to be proven or disproven by anyone.
The one thing we do know about the Cayuga breed is that they are proficient dual-purpose ducks, being capable of laying anywhere between 100 to 150 eggs per year while also weighing in at 7 to 8lbs once they reach maturity.
Buff Orpington ducks are known for being one of the best breeds you could invest into if you have children around your farmhouse.
They originate from England and are quite amazing dual-purpose ducks that will fit any role you need from them.
For one, they can lay as many as 150 to 220 eggs every year. Their eggs are also notably white and cream colored which makes them great to make your basket more colorful.
They may not be the largest ducks around but they can still get as heavy as 6 to 7lbs each, making them great for smaller backyard owners.
Ancona ducks are known for being some of the best all-around ducks you could invest into. That’s because they’re great with children, they are quite proficient egg layers and their meat is just downright delicious to say the least.
They can lay as many as 210 to 280 eggs per year, and on top of that they can also end up weighing as much as 6 to 6.5lbs each.
Their eggs are cream, white, blue or green colored, and even though they are critically endangered, they are still a joy to raise around your household if you can find a batch of them.
Ducks are amazing egg layers, and that’s a fact. But these breeds right here are just way better at the job than most others.
So, if you want a good egg-laying duck breed we wholeheartedly recommend that you get any of these breeds home. We can assure you that you will not regret it.