Abacot Rangers are extremely rare, beautiful, dual-purpose light ducks. They’re wonderful egg-layers, good for meat, good foragers, long-lived, friendly, hardy, and absolutely gorgeous.
They’re also known as the Hooded Ranger in America, the Streicherente or Streicher in Germany, and the La Canard Streicher in France.
Abacot Rangers are active foragers, and they usually live for at least ten years. They’re not good fliers, so you never have to clip or pinion their wings.
They lay 180-200 eggs a year, sometimes more or less. In the Wye College egg-laying trials in 1922-23, four Abacot Rangers laid 935 eggs in a year, which surpassed all other breeds represented in the trial.
Even being so prolific in the egg department, they’re actually not bad mothers and sitters. Some individuals aren’t interested in going broody, but others are.
Better yet, they’re a lot stockier than many of the other excellent egg-layers, so they’re pretty good meat birds.
Abacot Rangers weigh 5.5 (2 kg) to 6.6 pounds (3kg).
Female Abacot Rangers have a buff-colored “hood” on their head and males have an iridescent green hood when in nuptial plumage (during breeding season) and a black hood when in eclipse plumage.
The bill color of the Abacot Ranger is sex-linked: by eight weeks of age, the sex of the ducklings can be discerned by their bill color. Males will have olive green bills, and females will have dark slate grey bills.
It’s a pity the Abacot Ranger is so rare. Many people have never heard of or seen one.
I encourage all prospective duck owners to take a look at this beautiful breed.
Between 1917 and 1922, Oscar Gray of Colchester in Essex, U.K. created the Abacot Ranger by breeding Khaki Campbells and white Indian Runners. The breed was popular for a short while, and then would have died out if it wasn’t for H. Lieker in Germany, who stabilized the color and helped the breed become more noticed in the poultry world.
IMAGE AND VIDEO GALLERY
All photos (including images above) used with permission from avicoliornamentali.it.
Where in the United States can I get Abacot ducklings?
Thank you for any information you may have.
I’m sorry, I have no idea. I only know of two sellers, but one is in the UK and the other in Italy. So far I’ve never heard of their existence in the United States. If you can’t find any Abacot Rangers, you might consider the Welsh Harlequin instead. The two breeds look similar and share many qualities.
Who are the two seller of Abacot Ranger, The one in the UK and Italy ? Do they have websites ?
Chris and Mike Ashton: http://www.ashtonwaterfowl.net
I don’t personally know either of these breeders and I’ve never bought poultry from them, but they are the only ones I know of who breed and sell Abacot Ranger ducks. If you know of or find any others, I would love to know!
I’ve got three of these awesome ducks, about 5 months old now and trampling everything in sight, and as someone who has never had ducks before, I have to say I am so pleased I chose them. English breeder, if anyone wants a number let me know.
That’s awesome! I don’t think you could have made a better choice of duck breed. Enjoy the duck life!
I forgot to mention that next door have two from the same clutch of eggs [and Mum is a whopping 16 years old and still going strong] so our days are punctuated by conversations over the wall and now and then a party with lots of noise. They certainly made lockdown a lot more interesting 🙂
16! Wow! I have a 9-year-old Muscovy and I wonder how long she’ll live. I don’t think it’s common for ducks to live more than 12-15 years, although 20 years is certainly possible.
Sounds like you have a fun little duck family and neighbors! 🙂
Muscovies are usually longer lived than the mallard breeds. I’ve had several, usually females, that lived over 15 years. The males usually become dinner at a very young age (LOL).
They are great entertainment, now my mate wants to get a couple 🙂