A fox tried to take my Abbey

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Kleonaptra, Dec 7, 2014.

  1. Kleonaptra

    Kleonaptra Chillin' With My Peeps

    I have been letting everyone stay out late foraging. My partner heard some quacking I went to check and I couldnt see anything. I thought it was just the drakes getting at the girls because I left the gate open. I went to get my shoes to start putting them away and heard the door slam and my partner started yelling. A fox was literally right at our back door and it had Abbey by the neck. My partner chased it off. They must have known it was around because my australorp Shiela had put herself to bed and usually she would play hide and seek with me. Im so angry at myself I let this happen.

    I cant find any wounds, Abbey looks fine. He's having trouble holding his head up and his voice is really strained I think its just some bruising. Ive put him in my 'duck ambulance' a big plastic tub with a blanket and put him inside so I can keep an eye on him. Its very warm right now so I dont think he needs a heat source. He's got food and water but I dont expect him to be interested yet. He didnt even mind me holding him he was so frightened. I wanted to bring in his friend Que (who was utterly hysterical) but then I would have to bring Stormy too and I just dont have enough room. Im just restraining myself right now because I know he just needs some quiet time to get through the shock and I will fuss over him too much if I go in there.
     
  2. Kleonaptra

    Kleonaptra Chillin' With My Peeps

    I ended up bringing in Stormy and Que. They are all in my bathtub. I couldnt stand the thought of him being alone, he's never been without them. Que practically flung herself on top of him, she was so overjoyed. They are sitting quietly together muttering.
     
  3. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    You did the right thing getting all three together. Now, everyone else is safe from the fox? Make sure everyone is secure.

    If you have some poultry electrolytes, I would put that in the water to help - I would expect he'd be in shock.

    Some ducks get over that quickly, some take a day or three. A nice lukewarm bath for everybody would probably do them all some good, and you could watch Abbey's movements closely, see if there's anything you missed.

    We all make mistakes from time to time. We are just people, and we can get lulled into a false sense of security, or we can forget, or be distracted, or just not understand everything that is going on. I never saw a sign of fishers until early last year, there were tracks in the snow, just a few feet from our deck. Now I have added that predator to the list to watch out for.

    [​IMG]
     
  4. Kleonaptra

    Kleonaptra Chillin' With My Peeps

    Normally if I leave them out after dark I pay close attention. This time, the windows were closed from the storm so I couldnt hear and the TV was up loud, just a really bad combination of things. Even though my Talli was taken by a fox just days after we moved in here, I had lapsed back into that 'they wont come close to the house' thing. He was less than 4ft from our back door!

    He's carrying his neck in a big 'S' bend to support his head with his back. Normally he'd carry it up high. He has only had very few small sips of water and food today, he doesnt want to stretch his neck at all, and I think his throat is sore and swollen. He's out in the pen today.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    (That brown duck in the foreground is his mum!)

    As you can see he CAN extend it, but the preening he did was very gingerly and slowly. I think there is some swelling around the base of his neck at the body - I think my partner interrupted the fox right at that 'kill shake' moment. Every now and then he flexes his wings as if to stretch up and do the stretch flap, but doesnt get any further than a little wing flex. I think there is a good deal of bruising.

    I cant bring them into the bathroom again, my kids are just too noisy for a sick duck. My laundry has a broken window and Im worried about mr fox returning to claim his prey so Im going to nail some boards over it. I was reluctant to do this before as its a rented house but hey, worst come to worse I can always pry them off if I have to! Its more important he has a nice stress free place to go to bed. I dont know, I might let him go to bed in the big shed with everyone else, Im just not sure yet how strong he will feel. He's very miserable.
     
  5. lovinmyducks

    lovinmyducks Out Of The Brooder

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    I found my female duck Boots dead Friday after work. She had been attacked and her whole chest eaten. We have a 6 foot fence around the yard and I can't believe it happened. The only thing I can't think is it was a hawk or eagle? I'm so heartbroken. Now my other duck is alone and I worry something will happen to him. I feel so bad I couldn't protect her.
     
  6. Kleonaptra

    Kleonaptra Chillin' With My Peeps

    Yes that does sound like an aerial predator. We have been under constant attacks from predator birds, my ducks have learned to take cover as soon as the magpie larks warn us. I feed the local crows eggs and they generally chase off any hawks and I was so worried about attacks from above I forgot about foxes!

    Its something Ive just learned all over again - better that they be uncomfortable and alive then allowed free access everywhere and get attacked. Really, I should know so much better.

    Im so sorry about Boots. Sounds like you need a couple more ducks they really hate to be alone.
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2014
  7. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Very sorry for Boots' death. Predators return. Please secure your other duck, and yes, I would be looking for a buddy for him. Rather than worry, come up with a strategy. You have more resources than a predator does, though at times it may not feel like that.
     
  8. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    So very sorry for the loss of Boots, [​IMG] please look for some friends for your lone duck now and keep him/her safe. there is always something wanting to eat our flock. Try looking here on the animals free rehoming or the buy sell tread thread. or go to Where am I where are you, look up your state and post there if anyone has any ducks for free or sale.
     
  9. Jessica89

    Jessica89 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh I am so so sorry...
    I am terrified a fox will get my ducks!
    I keep mine in the enclosure but I have let them out to free roam the garden for an hour because they really enjoy it!!
    Will a fox kill them in the daylight? Should I put them back in their enclosure?
     
  10. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Around here foxes have been known to attack in daylight.
     

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