Dead duck


In the Brooder
9 Years
Apr 9, 2010
San Diego
I had five (four ducks, one drake) seven-week old Campbell's in about a 20-square-foot grow out cage until one died. A few evenings ago I noticed missing feathers on one of them, but nothing signifying an immediate emergency. I made a mental note to isolate that bird the next morning. When I arose the next AM, it was dead in the middle of the pool. My bedroom is near that cage - and my dogs, though indoors, miss nothing - and there were no signs of predator entry or wounds.

I suspect that the victim was either (1) the drake and the ducks killed him for being male, or (2) there was something weak or unusual about the victim so they killed it for that. Do I have some sort of racist, sexist, elitist ducks on my hands? Anyone ever see this in ducks? All of my previous ducks got along well.
Where were the feathers mussing from? What part of the body? Seven weeks is very young for hormonal behavior seems to me.

Are they fully feathered?

What is the night temperature?
I've never had aggression problems with my Muscovies even among the drakes. I have had two ducklings ( a couple of weeks old) drown as they got into the adult's pool and couldn't get out.
Feathers missing from the wings and the back, if I remember accurately. If not for the missing feathers, my guess'd be drowning, too.

A few years ago a friend gave me several RIR X Leghorn crosses she'd hatched. One of them was a congenital mess. As a result, the roos all picked on each other but not Mr. Congenitality. Somehow they knew he was special and left him alone. I'm wondering if the cause here is similar but the ducks reaction was the opposite due to the close quarters. It's a puzzle.
By the way, based on past results - and the rest of this present bevy - night time temps in San Diego are warm enough this time of year (especially this year). Likewise, I have nine roos the same age doing well in the same circumstances.
I have found that you can not let the ducks swim at night because they can't see well at night and they start to panic in the water and they eventually get exhausted and drown. I had this happen to 2 of my first ducks I got and I haven't ever let them swim at night since
I had two females drown in my pond the other year and have saved one from almost certain drowning all due to over zealous males grabbing their necks and holding them under water while they have their wicked way with them, although your ducks seem too young for this
regards david

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