Barakah Heritage Farm believes in preserving the heritage livestock breeds and heirloom plants whenever possible. These old time-tested genetics are uniquely suited to small farms and local markets. What we look for in livestock: Good mothering ability, parasite resistance, low input (needs little or no supplemental feed), hardy, foraging ability, gentle and easy to handle. Poultry should go broody and successfully raise offspring.
What we have and what we are planning:
These are not a heritage breed. However, these muscovies come from homestead-suitable bloodlines carefully selected over many generations for foraging ability, quick gains, large size and temperament. These are known as meat ducks but are also decent egg layers. They are quiet, do not require a pond, roost high, raise several batches of ducklings annually (usually 10+ ducklings per nest) and the adults will eat up to a pound of flies daily – each. Ducks are generally more gentle to garden plants (except greens) and will not uproot or eat plantings the way chickens will. The meat is dark, more like roast beef, and lean. These ducks have large claws for tree climbing, and they know how to use them. Between the claws and the large size, they are more resistant to the smaller predators. We keep our muscovies for insect control and eggs.
We have tried many breeds. We currently have Black Jersey Giants and Australorps, and hope to add back in Buckeyes. We prefer dual-purpose heritage breeds that are good foragers and excellent mothers, hatching and raising their own chicks. We do have hens of other breeds, to bring some color to our egg assortments, but do not breed them.
Black Jersey Giants and Australorps look very similar, so here is an excellent article comparing the breeds. We prefer to look at their feet, as generally Australorps have pink or gray soles, and Jersey Giants have orange soles.
We occasionally have eggs for sale, and plan to also offer started pullets and starter breeding flocks.