my friends, i have a flock of 24 ducks that have been very healthy. i feed them a high quality food. their coop is large and dry with deep straw bedding. i have noticed that they have been burrowing their bills into their straw inside their coop and outside in their pen. our climate is very wet and it froze frequently over the winter. i tossed straw into their coop on several occasions for both traction and to give them a place to lie down. the straw in their pen has, of course, gotten wet over time and they have walked and pooped on it although i try to keep it very clean. yesterday i noticed that one duck didn't seem to want to open her right eye and today i see that she has a very small pink growth near the lower outside corner of that same eye. i started examining the rest of the flock and there is another girl with the same pinkish growth right where her bill begins. did they get an infection by poking through their straw? i can't get near these girls without them going absolutely crazy, flying into the walls and fence, i have no idea how i am going to treat them.
i also have a girl who has started limping (actually she started this entire flock examination after i saw her). her middle toe seems swollen on the top of her foot, she has what looks like, from a distance, a white lump at the base of her heel, probably connected to that middle toe. i'm guessing it may be bumblefoot, but she has limped off and on for several months; it's only in the past day that she has been standing on one foot only.
i have tried everything to get these ladies to be friendlier with me, and in many ways they are, but when it comes to catching them, it's like they will kill each other and themselves just to get away from me. i am thinking of trying to toss a sheet over the ones i need to catch, i saw that suggested in another byc forum, but i have my doubts about the ducks' reaction and i am afraid of hurting them worse. the things they do to get away seem horrifying to me and i just can't see them hurt themselves. as i said before, i have no idea how i will even treat their medical issues is i can't even catch them. is there such a thing as ducky valium? help? i am at a loss and i don't have many (read as any) resources where i live.