Ducklings

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The ducklings on their first day outside.

The ducklings on their first day outside.

 

First Day Outside

Some of the ducklings went out for the first time the other day. They were very nervous at first, but they soon settled down and seemed to enjoy the grass and pan of water.

 

IMG_8960

 

A Sick Duckling

Yesterday I noticed that one of the ducklings had some trouble walking. Today it was worse and by this afternoon it was obvious that this little guy was not going to survive. It was mostly rolling around on its back in the brooder room and unable to walk. The only thing close to it that I’ve seen in my chickens is Marek’s Disease, but ducks are supposed to be immune to it.

 

Since the duckling could not get to the food and water, I knew I had to put it down and I wasn’t looking forward to it. (I’ve had to put a 2 day old chick down before, and it’s harder when they’re little and cute.) I made sure that the end was quick for the young duck rather than starvation, or being pecked to death by it’s flock mates.

 

On A Lighter Note…

I have a cute little clip of the ducklings outside for the first time…

 

 

Have you ever had a duckling lose it’s ability to walk?

 

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10 comments on “Ducklings

  1. BR

    Niacin deficiency is common in ducklings and causes severe leg weakness. I’ve found that Purina non-medicated chick feed has plenty of Niacin for them, but I’ve had bad results with some other brands. Because niacin is a water soluble B vitamin, it can be sensitive to exposure to light and air, so food that hasn’t been stored well may not have enough niacin for ducklings. I had two of my ducklings got to the point were they couldn’t walk. I added niacin supplement from my vet to their water and got new food and they recovered very well, but always had legs that were a little bow legged after that.

    Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      This is very good information to know, BR. Thanks for sharing. I think some of the feed is old when we purchase it at the farm supply store, so it’s good to have the supplements on hand. Thank you!

      Reply
  2. Beth P

    Oh Dear! I am sorry to hear about the duckling! Yes, it is much harder when they are young and cute but I guess if I had to survive on my own I would end up being a vegetarian… I know, I know, one gets used to it and I suppose I should start learning because I am getting chickens next year!!! YIKES! πŸ˜€
    Hugs and enjoy the rest of the week,
    Beth P

    Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      Thanks, Beth. So far the rest look fine. I could live closer to vegetarian, but would still like meat sometimes. πŸ™‚ Best wishes with the chickens next year!

      Reply
  3. Rae

    I had an incubator-hatched gosling go splay-legged where it couldn’t walk. I had to hobble it with a bandaid for a week until its muscles and tendons tightened up to where it didn’t need the hobble. Wasn’t rolling around on its back, though, except when it got too excited and went over backwards. Sorry about your duckling. πŸ™

    Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      Hi Rae,
      I’m glad the gosling fared better than my duckling. This one started out fine and then slowly lost it’s ability to control it’s legs. I haven’t figured out what it was, unless ducks are more susceptible to Marek’s disease than reported. Thanks for the kind words. I know that I will be butchering them eventually, but they won’t be so cute then!

      Reply
    1. Lisa Lynn Post author

      Thanks, Ann. It’s so hard to do when they are so cute. πŸ™ And the cat decided to oversee the whole operation too. I think she was hoping for duckling for dinner!

      Reply

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