Duck is acting very strange

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Irishluck628, Dec 12, 2011.

  1. Irishluck628

    Irishluck628 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just acquired an 8 year old male Pekin duck from my dad last night. (He's moving and can't take the duck with him) I have only had chickens so I'm not sure about raising a duck? I put the duck in the largest coop/run that houses a mixed flock of female hens. (I thought if I put him in with the roosters, they would kill him) And watched them for a while. He went in wagging his tail and looking around. My girls looked confused but all right with him being there. They all ate together, and he found the waterer just fine.

    I checked on them again in the morning and everything was fine. He was in the covered outside run walking around making grunting noises, with the chickens around him, and everyone was just hanging out. Then I checked on them again in the evening and he wasn't inside the coop with everyone else. He was still in the outside run shivering and dragging his beak around the ground. I was guessing he couldn't figure out how to get back into the coop, so I picked him up and put him into the coop myself. As soon as I put him down his head just dropped. He wouldn't walk until I start to pick him up, and then he will only walk for a second or two then he sits and drags his beak around the ground making a clicking noise opening and closing his beak just a little each time.

    I am so confused, is this normal duck behavior? Maybe he's homesick? Or is he really sick?

    I don't feel comfortable leaving him outside for the night, so I brought him inside to the bathroom. I thought maybe a swim would perk him up, so I filled the bath with warm water. He walked around a little and then went back to pecking water almost burying his entire head underwater. He would perk up for a minute or 2 then go back to just sitting with his head in the water, blowing bubbles out his nostrils. When I got him out I dried him off and gave him some Nutri-drynch. He's not eating, and not really drinking. (When he sticks his face in the water he doesn't tip his head back to swallow, so I don't think he's actually drinking) He has only pooped twice in 5 hours! Both times you can hear a loud fart sound and then diarrhea. His 1st stool was very light green and the 2nd one is black with a little white. (Sorry for the detail but I don't want to leave anything out)

    I have searched all over the internet and can't seem to find what to do, or what he could have? Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. DancingHen

    DancingHen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am not sure I can help with anything medical that may be wrong with him, but one thing that came to my mind was that maybe the waterer in the chicken coop wasn't deep enough for him. Ducks have to stick their entire bill/head under water to clear food out of their nostrils/sinuses or they can choke. Perhaps he ate a lot of dry food without access to deep water to clear his nostrils. Other than that I can't come up with any ideas....sorry. I hope someone with more duck experience finds your question. Good luck for both you and your duck.
     
  3. DancingHen

    DancingHen Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Perhaps he has something (food?) stuck in his nose?
     
  4. Irishluck628

    Irishluck628 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Also his beak is very warm....not sure if duck beaks are supposed to be warm though. Just thought I would note it! And his still in the same spot that he was in an hour ago. He's not sleeping, just not moving.

    Thanks for responding DancingHen! I didn't know that they needed to put their heads underwater. Chickens are the opposite! They actually have their choice of waterers. One is a rubber bowl about 4 inches deep X 8 inch diameter. The other is the one that came with the duck, approx. 2 inches deep X 8 inches X 1 foot. Looks kind of like a litter box with a heater in it.
     
  5. dumb_cluck

    dumb_cluck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Get him into some water ASAP! A plastic tub full.
     
  6. Roxy1989

    Roxy1989 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    [​IMG] hope he's going to be ok
     
  7. Irishluck628

    Irishluck628 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    UPDATE: He looks a lot better this morning, but not 100%. He will walk with his head up for a bit then go back into the same position he was in last night. He seems more alert today too! [​IMG]
    He still has diarrhea but now it looks mint green. I also saw him drink quite a bit so that's a little more reassuring. I am going to get him back into the bath once I'm done writing on here.
    Quick question... Do ducks need to be able to swim year round? (I live in Nebraska, so our winters get real cold!)
     
  8. pekinsRus

    pekinsRus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Did your Dad have this duck as a pet?
     
  9. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Ducks do not need to be able to swim, but it is absolutely necessary that they have water deep enough to wash their entire heads in at all times, and plenty of water. No food without plenty of clean water.

    Bringing him in for a bath regularly will help him.

    My runners are small, so a big stewpot which is nice and deep, works for them in the winter when the outdoor kiddie pool freezes over.

    Good move with the nutri-drench! A little (1 tablespoon) apple cider vinegar, preferably the kind that is not pasteurized, per gallon of water may help also.

    Moving is stressful for all of us, including ducks. His whole world changed. What kind of feed is available to him?

    Got pics????[​IMG]
     
  10. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Oh, thought I should explain - "clean water" to a duck person means that within the last several hours it was clean. It may not remain so for more than a few seconds, depending on how close the duck is to the water when it is presented. [​IMG]
     

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