Duck almost DROWN! Is her behavior normal?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by azhenhouse, Jan 2, 2012.

  1. azhenhouse

    azhenhouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I went out to put the ducks in for the night and found one of my eight month Saxony girls struggling to stay afloat. I grabbed her, and brought her in where I really thought she was going to die right in my arms. That was at 6:30pm and it was around 27 degrees out, it is now 8:30pm. She is breathing, and I don't hear any gargling. She is shaking, and moving her head in circles, and seems like she is trying to get up. She can occasionally lift her wings a touch, but can't lift her body. It is very stressful to watch, and I think I stress her out just being there. Does it sound like she if fighting to stay alive, and get the heck out of the house, or is she dying? I have her under a heat lap but how warm should I let it get?

    Just checked on her and she is violently shaking. Do you think she is suffering from hypothermia?
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2012
  2. Dusky Beauty

    Dusky Beauty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    She will actually probably dry out, warm up and be fine. Keep her under the heat lamp and leave food available. I had a duck do this twice (same one) and bounce back both times until she did it for a third time when I wasn't home and someone else let the birds out and I didn't find her until it was too late. In the future you're going to want to NOT let this girl get into any water deep enough to drown in without supervision. In my experience a duck silly enough to nearly drown herself once is silly enough not to learn from the experience.
     
  3. azhenhouse

    azhenhouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks Beauty,

    I can't believe she got stuck in the darn pool. She has been in and out of that pool since this summer. The only difference is that it is in a different location. I feel bad because she had been in it for hours, and it is so cold out.

    Sorry for you loss. [​IMG]
     
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Is there any possibility that the drakes (don't know how many you have) may have been 'gang breeding' her and worn her out? It is not all that unusual for multiple dakes attempting to breed the same hen with resultant drowning.
     
  5. azhenhouse

    azhenhouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:I was actually wondering that myself. We have one too many drakes for our small flock, and one is being especially aggressive about mating. He doesn't stop, and seems to get the others started. I actually locked up the drakes earlier today so that the ducks could swim without being bothered. My son told me that there were no ducks in the pool when he let the drakes out. I bet anything that is what happened. She ended up in the water with all three drakes, and after they mated with her she was simply too weak to get out. I need to get rid of a drake.
     
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2012
  6. GrannyCarol

    GrannyCarol Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is she molting? If she's changing feather, she might get waterlogged and be unable to get out because she's too heavy with absorbed water. Also is there an easy way out of the water if she does get water logged. I'd probably bring her in somewhere warm in a pen or crate until she is dry and warm again, then put her out tomorrow. Of course I have a nice garage with a heated room and dog crates, so it's easy for me.
     
  7. azhenhouse

    azhenhouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:No, she isn't molting. She was very water logged though. I wish I had a garage to bring my ducks and chickens into when there is an emergency. However, I do have a mud room, and that is where she is with a heat lamp warming her up. She must have spent an hour trying to get on her feet but finally gave up, and is resting now.
     
  8. Dusky Beauty

    Dusky Beauty Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It could be "too much love" from the boys, OR molting, but my girl drowned without either of those hazards. She just didn't have the sense to paddle to the stairs and exit the pool. Sometimes it's just one of the few things that can go wrong with raising ducks. It's a pretty short list though, they are quite a hardy species. She was a white layer hybrid from Metzer. Their all white souped up layer breed is a more recent offering bred for confined high output laying, I suspect her "line breeding" just didn't give her a whole helping of common sense.
     
  9. zzGypsy

    zzGypsy Chillin' With My Peeps

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    you might want to do a quick search on "wet feather" also - it's a condition where they're not making enough oil to keep the feathers properly waterproof, which can lead to waterlogging and hypothermia or drowning.
     

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