Clipping Muscovy Duck Wings?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by JewelBirds, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. JewelBirds

    JewelBirds Songster

    Apr 13, 2017

    I've never clipped wings before on any species, so I am looking for advice on clipping my Muscovys' wings. There's five of them (3 males, 2 females). This fall they molted and regrew some feathers (my brother had their wings clipped already when he gave them to me). Recently, they've "rediscovered" their wings. The females especially, have been escaping, from what I call their fake free-range pen (it's close to free range in that it's open, but there's a fence that keeps them in one area). I'm worried that they'll go towards the road or wander too far and not come back. So do I clip the primaries and the secondaries, or just the primaries? Also, what should I cut the feathers with? Will a pair of scissors do? Should I be worried about bleeding?

    Thank you
  2. Kkrista123

    Kkrista123 Songster

    Dec 2, 2018
    Hatboro PA
    My Coop
    Hello! So yes, you should worry about a bleeder. Ducks can bleed to death through a bloody feather so if it get's to a certain point the feather should be plucked. Try not to worry about that though because if you follow the instructions, it shouldn't happen. I am only clipping one wing of my duck because I have seen ducks and chickens learn how to fly a little again with both wings clipped. If you only clip one, they don't have the balance to fly at all. There's different thing you can use to learn, articles and videos! I prefer videos but some people prefer articles so I'll leave both! Also, scissors are fine!
    Good luck!
  3. JewelBirds

    JewelBirds Songster

    Apr 13, 2017
    I clipped the ducks' wings this morning. The most difficult part was keeping them still - to say they were unimpressed is an understatement. I have a feeling "Gray One" won't eat treats from my hand tonight. Other than that it went pretty good - no bleeders - and it seems to be working so far. Thank you for all the info @Kkrista123

    "Gray One"
    bluemerle and Miss Lydia like this.
  4. Jpat

    Jpat Free Ranging

    Apr 30, 2018
    Nova scotia
    wrap them up like a burrito in a towell to avoid claws, leave one wing out
    JewelBirds likes this.
  5. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Mary Did You Know....

    I hold mine down on the floor with my knee on their backs not hard but just to keep them still but a towel is good too.
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  6. JewelBirds

    JewelBirds Songster

    Apr 13, 2017
    Yeah I used both of those ways a little bit. I had a towel that I used to catch them and I kept them on the ground/floor. Luckily I had a helper who stretched out the wing for me while I held the duck in one place and cut the feathers.
    Miss Lydia and Jpat like this.
  7. Fishkeeper

    Fishkeeper Crowing

    Oct 30, 2017
    Central Texas
    You might be able to train them to be less bothered by future trimming. Make a habit of picking them up, restraining them for just a bit, and then immediately giving them yummy treats. Start out with however much restraint they'll tolerate, no matter how little that is. As they learn to put up with it, extend the amount longer and longer. Works on dogs, works on cats, should work on ducks. Makes exams and any sort of trimming way easier.
    Miss Lydia likes this.

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