By Emma Paunil – Khaki Campbell ducks were bred in the early 1900s by Mrs. Adele Campbell, Uley, Gloucestershire, England. Mrs. Campbell created the Khaki Campbell duck with the intention to produce a better egg layer. She bred her only duck, which was a Penciled Runner, to a Rouen drake. A season later she bred the offspring to a Mallard. The result was the Campbell duck.
In 1941, the Campbell was admitted to the American Standard of Perfection. The Campbells come in three different colors: White, Dark, and Khaki. However, only the Khaki variety was admitted to the Standard.
The Campbell duck has prominent, alert eyes set in a fairly long clean-cut face, and is an excellent forager.
These ducks have prominent, alert eyes set in a fairly long clean-cut face. They have an almost erect, slender, and refined neck. Their breast is deep and well rounded. The body is compact and deep with a carriage of 35° above horizontal. The bills of these ducks are green with a black bean. Their eyes are dark brown. The neck of the drake is a glossy brownish bronze color; the neck of the duck is brown. The drake’s legs are a dark orange and the female’s legs are brown or closely matching the body color. Old drakes weigh about four and a half pounds; old ducks weigh about four pounds.
These beautiful, light-class duck outlays all purebred ducks, and most chicken breeds with a yearly egg count of 280-340 eggs. The ducks lay small white duck eggs that are great for baking. Despite these birds being excellent egg layers, they are not the sort for brooding and hatching ducklings. Though some Khaki Campbell ducks might decide to go broody it does not happen often in a year. Artificial incubators would probably be a must for the Khaki Campbell duck breeder.
In addition to being exquisite layers, these birds are hardy, and are excellent foragers. If they are given the privilege of free ranging, they will eat weeds, grasses, and as many insects as they can find. Their life expectancy is 10-15 years if they live with proper care.
The Khaki Campbell duck is an overall brilliant bird. Anyone who is interested in keeping ducks for eggs, exhibition, or just as pets, would be happy with the Khaki Campbell duck.
Storey’s Guide to Raising Ducks by Dave Holderread “Campbells”
American Standard of Perfection 1998 published by the American Poultry Association “Khaki Campbell Ducks”
Originally published in Backyard Poultry August / September 2009 and regularly vetted for accuracy.