Hello! I have four Cayuga ducks, they are just over 4 weeks old now and still in the brooder while we build their outdoor enclosure.
I am feeding them non medicated Purina starter, sprinkling niacin on the food and also putting one cap into a gallon of water. They drink out of a cut gallon jug right now.
I have one duck who has had her third seizure. The first time it happened she was startled by us moving a little bit of the bedding out.
What she did: She flattened on to her stomach, wings out and was flapping them against the bedding. Her neck was tilted to the side and would raise and lower.We didn't hold her down but gently blocked her from hitting anything with her head and wings. Once she was "done" she was wobbly. I had no idea what was going on, she wouldnt eat or drink minutes after so I tossed her into a bath where she seemed perfectly fine, diving, drinking a lot, preening.
The second seizure happened a week or two later when she was startled again by something moving in the room. I wasn't present but Hub said she started running in circles, banging her head against the sides of the plastic brooder.
The third happened this morning, approx. 1.5 weeks after the last one. It was their first night without any lights on in the room, as the indoor temp. matches what they would normally be at and being Cayugas - almost fully juvenile feathered, I figured they would be fine. I opened the door after announcing myself and had my phone light on so It wouldn't be a huge shock to them. It still was. They panicked and then she started having another seizure. Same as the first one only being larger now she scraped her wing up a bit with her claws. Not massively but enough to bleed a little.
After it was over, lasting under 1 minute, she was so shaky, heart racing, breathing really hard. She was so wobbly. Just standing there and slowly swaying from side to side. I checked on her before leaving for work and she's all normal again.
They are VERY messy creatures so I wonder if I'm not cleaning the brooder as much as I should and there's mold. Their waterer is on a plastic tub covered in wire, so when they splash it goes into the tub. Their bedding is alpine all natural shavings, mixed with some straw.
Each time the seizure seems to be triggered by being startled. She has been under "stress" before when we pick them up to move them or clean the brooder, but it never seemed to bother her. It's when she suffers a strange panic that it happens. So I'm really at a loss.
I plan to set up a second brooder tonight and separate them and see if that helps.
The worst part is I THINK it's the same duck. They look so much alike but it's always one that it seems to happen to under the startled circumstance.
Any help or insight would be predicated. Thank you for reading this long post.