Best and worse ducks to eat?

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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby rikasam2013 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 7:29 pm

My method is to take the meat and do a soak in water in the fridge. Change the water at least every day for 3 days for divers, mallards and other puddlers I leave for 2 days. Teal and woodies and HEN hooded mergansers don't need anything except to be pan fried and eaten. Goldeneyes are generally ground for burger as are Canada geese. Scaup and ringers are good in the pan. A lot of my birds are served as philly cheese steak...yum. Snows and specks I have found are really good. Drake mergs of any type I try not to shoot anymore, too strong even after soaking. Mallard stir fry is great, another way split the breast and make a pocket, fill with blue cheese, bread them and pan fry quickly then finish in the oven... :thumbsup:
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby Dave in AZ » Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:14 pm

Pretty much all puddle ducks where I am.
Mallard and Pintail and GWT I like best, all seem to be about the same. Med rare on grill/pan/smoker after week marinade.
Wigeon are good and I'd rate next.
Gadwall next.
Spoonbill/Shovelor next... OK, but I cook in a way to not highlight the meat flavor.
Ate two ringneck, it was OK. Absolute hell to get the skin off though!
Ate one canvasback, it was very good, shot in AZ so not a coastal bird, I liked it as good as mallard. Don't see many here.

I can cook it all to be decent, but if there are enough ducks flying, I'll probably avoid shovelor in favor of mallard. I like it fine, but can tell my wife doesn't think it's as good.
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby Duckwyatt80 » Sun Nov 05, 2017 7:51 pm

My order goes something like this:
1. Green Winged Teal and Woodies
2. Mallards, Widgeons (I have found many Widgeons to have white fat and it gives the a good flavor.)
3. Gadwall, Pintail, and Blue Winged Teal (the BWT can go higher sometimes)
4. Redheads, Canvasbacks
5. Divers.
Of course this can change based on their diet. Either way I will shoot em and cook em.
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby handyandy » Thu Nov 16, 2017 11:55 am

they all eat just fine in my opinion, I pretty much for all stick with throwing the breast in a good cast iron pan with some butter seared medium rare with little garlic powder, salt, pepper, and onion powder. I've also cut the meat into chunks and used duck and goose meat on many occasions for a beef substitute in stews and beef stroganof.
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby Northerner » Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:09 pm

I prefer Woodies and Teal but I also really like Mallards too. About the only Duck I've ever tried and found to be unfit for human consumption are the Mergansers.

Ive heard you can soak them in milk for a couple days, wrap them in bacon and grill them medium rare. This way they look nicer and smell a little better when they go in the trash.
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby one8sevenn » Thu Dec 28, 2017 12:58 pm

Tier 1- Canvasbacks

Tier 2- Redheads/Mallards/Green Wing Teal/Pintail

Tier 3- Ruddy ducks/Gadwall/Widgeon/Blue Wing Teal/Ringneck duck/Coots

Tier 4- Lesser Scaup/Bufflehead/Non Great Salt Lake Goldeneye/Cinnamon Teal/Northern Shoveler

Tier 5- Common Merganser

Tier 6- Great Salt Lake Goldeneye
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby Ducktor P » Fri Mar 23, 2018 8:12 am

Teal, woodies, mallards are my favorites. Wigeons, grey ducks, cans, pinnies and red heads are all good eating but I tend to marinate them. Don't eat coot or merganser. There's a reason mergansers are called flying anchovies. I do enjoy eating divers too just gotta do it right.

How to cook divers: clean them, soak them in milk (overnight preferably), marinate them the next day, cut them into medallions and sear them on the grill until medium rare. Favorite thing I like to do with them after that is cut them into strips and do a stir fry.
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby Theduckguru » Fri Mar 23, 2018 9:40 pm

Labrador ducks.
Banded Birds - Black Ducks - 6, Mallards 19 (3 Jack Miner) BW Teal - 2, Wood Ducks - 1, 1 Ross and 1 snow Goose (Both reward bands) , Canada Geese - 15 (2 neck collars), Morning Dove - 1.
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby Slack Tide » Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:17 pm

I have eaten black duck, mallards, pintail, brant, buffs and geese. The only stand out in my mind are geese. They are great when done right. Everything else was marginal to awful every time. I find that once they are in the salt marshes nibbling on barnacles and God knows what else, they all taste the same. Irony, slightly fishy, with livery highlites and a funky, fart like finish....
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby Yuchi1 » Wed Mar 28, 2018 10:07 am

one8sevenn wrote:Tier 1- Canvasbacks

Tier 2- Redheads/Mallards/Green Wing Teal/Pintail

Tier 3- Ruddy ducks/Gadwall/Widgeon/Blue Wing Teal/Ringneck duck/Coots

Tier 4- Lesser Scaup/Bufflehead/Non Great Salt Lake Goldeneye/Cinnamon Teal/Northern Shoveler

Tier 5- Common Merganser

Tier 6- Great Salt Lake Goldeneye


This, except would place Gadwall & Widgeon in tier 2 as the ones we have around here tend to have white fat.
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby BusterAZ » Fri Oct 26, 2018 4:18 pm

My favorite is green wing teal. Just wish they were bigger!
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby The Pas Swamp Donkey » Fri Oct 26, 2018 9:02 pm

Lawn darts and scoters can be downright nasty. Best depends on feed. Canvasbacks in the wild rice are fine. Mallards in the barley for a few weeks are good, but I do like just about any bird as long as it has been brined and smoked.
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Re: Best and worse ducks to eat?

Postby BusterAZ » Sat Oct 27, 2018 7:33 am

The Pas Swamp Donkey wrote:Lawn darts and scoters can be downright nasty. Best depends on feed. Canvasbacks in the wild rice are fine. Mallards in the barley for a few weeks are good, but I do like just about any bird as long as it has been brined and smoked.


Do you pluck the whole bird to smoke it?
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