Muscovy ducks may not be native to Florida but they have become a common sight in neighborhoods throughout the state.
In fact, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission estimates that there are tens of thousands of Muscovy ducks in Florida. Known to be extremely prolific if left uncontrolled, the population of Muscovy ducks can increase in record time. For this and other reasons, many Florida residents consider them a nuisance.
Considered an invasive species, Muscovy ducks are known for being aggressive in nature, damaging property, transmitting disease, and, of course, for leaving unsightly droppings behind. The Muscovy will make his home in just about any habitat – from wooded swamps to coastal wetlands, to rivers and ponds – although they prefer those with water and sheltered trees. They are known as big eaters who will eat you out of house and home if you feed them, however, these ducks typically eat mosquitoes, flies, spiders, beetles, worms, slugs, fish, reptiles and small mammals. These foragers are especially helpful at keeping pesky slugs and bugs away, as well as those critters that are known to infect livestock.
While state law prohibits the relocation of these ducks into native wildlife areas because they may be carriers of disease, public health agencies do not have evidence that Muscovy ducks or their droppings present any real health threat to human beings. However, exposure to salmonella may occur if handling newly hatched chicks. Therefore, it is advised that small children, the elderly and anyone with immune system problems avoid handling them.
The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation does not remove Muscovy ducks, therefore removal of the ducks must be done by a landowner or by a nuisance wildlife trapper. Another option is to hire a pest control company to treat the area. All Florida Pest Control uses non-toxic, environmentally friendly treatment solutions that deter ducks without the use of pesticides. These treatments are ideal for public places because they dramatically reduce duck habitation and the unsightly droppings they leave behind, while also being safe for children, pets and the environment.