Crested duck being picked on

5ducks

In the Brooder
Jun 20, 2021
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36
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Sorry for the long post, I have 4 ducks and 1 drake about 5-6 months old. They were all raised together and have gotten along pretty well up until recently. One female is a white crested and a 2-3 weeks ago her crest started getting shorter and eventually got a bald spot. I separated her from the other ducks where she could still see them. She healed up well so I put her with the other ducks and put the male in the separate pen by himself for about 9 hours. When I came home I checked on them and her crest was being pulled out again:( so now she is back in the pen by herself. I think it’s my female khaki campbell, I have seen her mount the crested and pull at her head. None of the other ducks have any balding on them.

Is my poor crested duck doomed to live in a separate pen forever? Will the others eventually lose interest in her? Should I try to isolate the khaki campbell once the crested is all healed up again and see if they leave her alone? Would adding more ducks help since it seems to also be the female picking on her as well?

Thank you all in advance for any help
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
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Poor girl, this happens to crested and it can be dangerous for them since there is nothing but fatty tissue between that crest and her brain, You may have to keep her separated for her safety. Have you tried putting one of the other females with her for company? I can't say if adding more ducks would help it could back fire too. You could let them all be together once in a while for foraging with your supervision? Hopefully others that have crested ducks will weigh in since they will have the experience.
 
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5ducks

In the Brooder
Jun 20, 2021
35
36
46
Poor girl, this happens to crested and it can be dangerous for them since there is nothing but fatty tissue between that crest and her brain, You may have to keep her separated for her safety. Have you tried putting one of the other females with her for company? I can't say if adding more ducks would help it could bake fire too. You could let them all be together once in a while for foraging with your supervision? Hopefully others that have crested ducks will weigh in since they will have the experience.
Haven’t tried putting another female with her, will do that in a week or so when her crest feathers grow back again, I think one of my welsh harlequinns would be nice enough to her. Thank you
 

KaleIAm

Free Ranging
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Jul 13, 2015
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Carnation, Wa
I'm sorry to hear about your crested.

When my much loved crested came to me she was very beat up from overmating. She even had permanent damage to her feather follicles requiring surgery from a vet.

I think it's important to protect all birds from overmating, but especially crested ducks. Because of the skull deformity, like Miss Lydia explained. My flock is all female and whenever they mated my crested they held on to her crest with their bills for balance.

Personally I would probably separate your crested and put her with your most submissive female friend. If they still have crest pulling problems you might give them supervised swimming time, since that is where they will likely mate the most.
 

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