So my favorite duck passed away today. I was so confused by her symptoms and how quickly she went down hill, husband and I did a necropsy since it wasn't some sort of mystery illness. Cause of death was from a perforated crop and subsequent damage caused by stomach contents leaking into the body cavity, due to a large piece of wire/fence bit. It isn't the kind of fence we used to build, so she must have found it in the yard from someone else's project or something from before we moved here. It's a really thick gauge, don't know why she would have thought to eat such a thing. I can't tell what it came off of, it's as thick as field fence. Also in her crop was a piece of white ceremic and two bits of glass but they didn't look problematic. It was that giant piece of metal sticking up out of her crop when I opened her up that gave it away. So, today's lesson is make sure your entire free range area is free from wire, glass, and anything else that isn't leaf or grass or dirt. I walk the yard all the time, but missed that. Going to barrow FIL's metal detector though and keep the other ducks locked up until I know I've picked up everything from every square inch. It's not like we live in a junk yard, but it's a 100 year old house where part of the back yard was an alley back in the day. So apparently there's enough debris left back there to kill a duck. I feel like poo now, it was totally preventable if I had set up a sifting machine and ripped all the topsoil up and sifted through the entire surface area of the yard to find everything dangerous before replacing all the dirt and throwing grass seed, long before getting any ducks. Ugh. What's that saying? ____ happens? Why did it have to be the favorite hen, the only one old enough to lay eggs right now? This is exactly why I kept two males, in case something happened. Now I'm short a female.