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My ducklings are acting "weird." Help?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

So, my husband and I have been raising chickens for about a year, but we just received our first batch of four ducklings about three days ago. 

Today, I noticed that my ducklings were opening and closing their mouths a lot without making sounds.  Now when I say opening and closing them, I mean consistently for a couple of minutes and then they would stop.  Mainly, it was when they were laying down.  Then they would become active, and eat and drink, then lay back down and consistently open and close them.  Does this mean anything?  Is my brooder too warm?  The lady said that they were newly hatched, so I put the brooder on 95 degrees.  They do lay with the heat lamp is pointed to sometimes, other times they prefer to sleep on the wet bedding around the waterer (which is changed out twice daily, at the moment.  I know that might become more frequent).  I did have one duckling die on us shortly after bringing it home.  It seemed to be having some sort of seizures. :(

Is something possibly going on, or am I just being an over-protective mama duck?

Thanks!
Julie

post #2 of 6

Whew, 95 is too warm.

 

Ducklings need to be 90F their first week, some do better between 85F and 90F.

 

Do they have water with food 24/7?

 

Have you seen these?

 

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/641902/created-a-water-saver-for-my-duck-brooder

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/679433/water-water-everywhere/10

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/858161/feed-water-solution-for-brooder#post_12901321

 

http://frankiemakes.blogspot.ca/2012/06/watering-solution-for-ducks.html

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/259876/do-your-ducks-have-water-at-night/10#post_13568197

 

post number 8 from this

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/959603/ducklings-getting-stuck-on-their-backs#post_14939819

 

http://www.backyardchickens.com/t/969751/help-baby-ducklings#post_15125952

 

Please PM me, or use @Amiga in the message if you would like to hear from me soon.  

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post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

They always have food and water. :)  I just added a water dish deep enough for them to slosh their heads around in tonight.  The waterer wasn't cutting it anymore. 

Thank you!  I will try these great ideas.  I may wait just a little bit so my tiny chicks can get up on a "platform" type water catcher too.  Don't want to dehydrate them.

I will go fix the temperature.  I read Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks, but I feel like I'm kind of getting the information confused between the ducklings and the chicks.

post #4 of 6

Yes, there are significant differences, and if I recall, temperature is one of them.

 

It's a steep learning curve.

 

Also, sniff for anything moldy - ducks are very sensitive to molds.  It can lead to lung diseases - very serious.  At the same time, ducks are pretty resilient, if they have good food, fresh water, and reasonably clean environment.  And love.  Love helps a lot.

Please PM me, or use @Amiga in the message if you would like to hear from me soon.  

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post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

I have been cleaning out all of the wet bedding, so there shouldn't be anything moldy in their brooder.  The brooder is also pretty big.  It's one of those 100 gallon tanks that Tractor supply uses to put their chicks in.  The heat lamp is only on one side of it.  So the ducklings and chickens can choose how "warm" they want to be.  I did knock the brooder's temperature down to 90 though.  Thank you so much again. :)  I'm so glad I joined this forum.  Everyone here is so friendly and helpful and I'm so appreciative because even though I read that book, I feel like there was so much to "take in," that I didn't quite grasp it all.

post #6 of 6


I had 32 of them and they did the same thing one day so I put them outside to play (at this point they where 4 to 5 weeks old so they where old enufe to be out) I went back out after cleaning out there pen and one by one they started to die after they where done I had 3 out of the 32 live I still have the 3 that did not die I will post pics of them to show you how they are doing   

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