Day Old Baby Rouen Ducklings
Hatching February to November
Rouens are big ducks, with flavorful meat. They are colored like Mallards, but are much larger. There are two types of Rouen Ducks: the Exhibition Rouen, which is primarily raised for decorative purposes or for meat, and the Production Rouen, which is smaller and lays more eggs but still is a good sized duck for meat.
Production: The Exhibition Rouen is so big that females may crush her eggs if she is allowed to attempt to incubate them. These big birds take 7-10 months to reach full maturation, but patience is rewarded with a heavy, flavorful roasting duck. Exhibition Rouens lay only 25-125 eggs per year.
Production Rouens are slightly smaller, but lay more eggs, 140-180 per year. We sell Production Rouens. Production Rouens can be processed as early as 4 months and will weigh around 5 1/2 pounds. Many choose to weight until the Rouen is a year old when they are more flavorful and a heavier weight of 8-9 pounds.
Temperament: Rouens are calm ducks, and the word "majestic" is frequently used to describe them. They are waterfowl, so require water, but should also have plenty of area where they can walk and forage on land. They are not good fliers because they are so heavy, so there is no need to worry about them flying off.
History: Rouens were first bred in France. In fact, they most likely come from the region around the French town of Rouen. Much has changed since this breed first appeared in England in the 19th century.
Historians note that British farmers used selective breeding to double the size of the Standard Rouen, and also to increase the size of the keel, making the bird look like a boat. The first Rouens in the United States arrived in 1850 and were used as general farm ducks until gaining popularity as an exhibition breed. They were first included in the American Poultry Association's Standard of Perfection in 1874.
Some modern breeders have reported that keels have gotten so large some drakes have difficulty mating. It is recommended that breeders use males with smaller keels to prevent problems.
Due to their slow rate of growth, Rouens are not appropriate for industrial poultry production. However, they are great for the small farmer or backyard flock. As large, meaty birds, they are perfect for roasting.
Colors: Rouens have identical coloring to Mallards, in both sexes, and have been referred to as "Giant Mallards" in the past. Drakes have bright green heads, white colors, and dark red breasts. Females are a mottled brown, with a black streak across the eye, and slight paler faces. Juveniles resemble the females.
Status: American Livestock Breeds Conservancy Conservation Status: Rouens are listed under the Watch category by the ALBC. This means there is an estimated worldwide population of under 10,000 and that there are fewer than 5,000 breeding birds in the US.
Body Type: Rouen Ducks are square, boat-like birds. Even the smaller Production variety is a heavy duck. They are the shape of a Spanish Armada boat.
Standard Weights: Old Male 10 lbs, Old Female 9 lbs, Young Male 9 lbs, Young Female 8 lbs
Classification: American Poultry Association Class: Heavy Duck Class