Khaki Campbell ducks are one the most popular domesticated breeds kept in the United States. This attractive breed was created by crossing Runner, Fawn, and Rouen ducks. Some historical accounts also indicate they crossed khaki Campbell ducks with wild Mallard ducks, but others do not. They are a superb multi-purpose duck breed for both large and backyard homesteads. Khaki Campbell ducks are not only excellent egg layers but sitters as well. This duck breed is commonly referred to as a multi-purpose type of duck because you can successfully raise it for its delicious and moist meat.
Members of this breed are lightweight to medium-weight ducks and weigh between four to close to five pounds once mature.
Drakes have a green bill and legs and feet that are usually a shade of dark orange.
The lower back, upper neck, head, and tail culverts are a brown to bronze shade, and the rest of the male Khaki Campbell’s plumage is a mild khaki in hue.
Female Khaki Campbell’s have ahead in a lighter shade of brown, typically a more golden yellow shaded bill, and more uniformly brown feathers in the shade.
Whether male or female, Ducklings are dark brown to black with a small amount of white plumage in the breast area.
This breed is very environmentally hardy. Khaki Campbell ducks have been known to thrive in cold climates where the temperature dips below zero for even weeks at a time.
Khaki Campbell Duck Egg Laying Facts
Duck hens of this breed commonly lay between roughly 170 to 230 eggs annually. The hens typically lay even more eggs during their first two years of life.
Khaki Campbell hens start laying when they are only five to seven months old, on average.
Duck hens of this breed commonly lay eggs without a decline in quantity for about five years.
The creamy white eggs laid by Khaki Campbell hens are graded extra large and weigh approximately two and a half to two and three-quarters ounces. Some hens lay eggs with a slight green tint.
The average lifespan of a Khaki Campbell duck is about eight to 10 years. Although egg laying will slow down as the hens get older, it rarely ever stops entirely, and there does not seem to be
a decrease in quality.
They also live comfortably in humid and arid climates where the heat can hit upwards of 100 degrees during the summer. Like nearly all domestic ducks varieties, Khaki Campbell ducks do not fly. Occasionally, a duck may be able to flap their wings enough to get a few inches off the ground and propel themselves forward for may one foot, but that is the extent of their flying capabilities.
History Of Khaki Campbell Ducks
They started the Khaki Campbell breed in Gloucestershire, England, during the latter part of the 1800s. Adele Campbell wanted to create a duck breed that would keep her family constantly supplied with roasted duck. Initially, Adele Campbell crossed her White Indian Runner and Fawn ducks due to their heavy laying abilities. Next, Campbell bred the offspring of the first crossing with a Rouen duck. This second breeding created ducklings with a larger body that more resembled that of a traditional meat duck. This new duck breed was first introduced to the public at large in 1898 as the Campbell breed. During this era, buff, colored feathers were a fad, so Adele Campbell bred her original ducks with Penciled Runner ducks to create more fashionable plumage. The color created did not exactly resemble a buff and caused Campbell to be reminded of the shades of British army uniforms. She named this new variation of the duck breed she created, Khaki Campbell. It was not until 1941 that the Khaki Campbell duck breed first appeared in the United States. The American Poultry Association ultimately recognized the species. The population of the Khaki Campbell breed initially remained stagnant or decreased in America. But, during the 1970s, the breed made a resurgence when the “back to the land movement” was embraced by tens of thousands of Americans. After the Vietnam War when a wave of Asian immigrants came to the United States and brought their love of duck eggs along with them. Another surge in the importation of Khaki Campbell ducks occurred due to the breed’s robust egg production reputation.