Duck laying with no shell or membrane

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Tivona, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. Tivona

    Tivona Chillin' With My Peeps

    601
    52
    161
    Jun 2, 2011
    Oregon
    I posted over in the Emergencies/Diseases/Injuries and cures section but thought I should ask here as well. I have one duck who is laying with no shell or membrane and I have no idea what to do or try.

    All the ducks get Waterfowl, layer pellets, oyster shell, and grit. All separate. I also provide a bit of BOSS and a little bit of Brewers yeast in the feed.

    All the others that are laying have strong shells. She has been laying for almost a year now and the first 6 months or so had perfect eggs. Then the shell got a bit tweaked for a several months. Then the last month rubber eggs mostly followed by the shell-less and membrane-less eggs this week.


    I have been supplementing her with a bit of dog food as well as she's a bit thin. Since I started her on the dog food (as well as a bit more yeast) I think part of her problem is not having molted in ages (last spring as I recall). But perhaps more is going on? Any ideas or tips or suggestions?
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

    22,984
    1,959
    471
    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I have been dealing with a bit of this for the last several months. I think some ducks just get this condition.

    If she's seeming like she is a little underweight, could she have some kind of internal parasites that might be affecting her overall health? Do you have a vet who might look at her, look at a fecal sample?

    My vet gave us neoglucan for one of our ducks, and I added calcium supplements to their feed in addition to the oyster shell. Right now the runners are taking a break from laying, and I am happy about that, because I feel they are getting a rest. They had been laying almost nonstop for a year and a half.
     
  3. Tivona

    Tivona Chillin' With My Peeps

    601
    52
    161
    Jun 2, 2011
    Oregon
    I mix DE in some of their feed from time to time and also sprinkle it around the coop so they get some worm control there. Although I could get an actual wormer or give her more DE. I haven't seen anything alarming in her or anyone elses poop. I know that doesn't really mean much though. I have not talked to a vet yet but was going to call around tomorrow. What is neoglucan? I've never heard of it.

    I understand what your saying about happy they are getting a rest. This little girl has been laying nonstop for most of a year now. I really wish she would just stop, molt and take a rest. But she seems still in full swing, at least for the egg whites and yolks. The missing membrane is what is scaring me. The thin shells I can understand as not enough calcium perhaps. I hate to mix the oyster shell into the food as the others are getting enough choosing it as needed.
     
  4. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

    12,307
    171
    323
    Sep 7, 2009
    Florida - Space Coast
    DE once wet is ineffective. It is good to keep bugs out of feed containers, and to dust bedding with or birds, but once ingested (thus becoming wet) it does nothing. So it wouldn't be providing any internal parasite control for you. We use Ivermectin here on our ducks, geese, and chickens.
     
  5. 70%cocoa

    70%cocoa Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,418
    33
    171
    Feb 24, 2011
    Canberra, Australia
    An ongoing soft /shell-less egg problem is most likely due to an infection of the shell gland. This needs antibiotics. I had a duck with this problem and the vet put her on 30 days of Baytril (tablets given once a day). It has helped. But the damage to the cells can be permanent and it's a hard kind of infection to get rid of.

    Ongoing soft eggs are usually nothing to do with calcium.
     
  6. chickengrandma

    chickengrandma Chillin' With My Peeps

    183
    3
    103
    Nov 3, 2009
    Wisconsin
    I am NOT giving you this advice from knowledge or experience...it is ONLY an idea or suggestion to look into.

    A girlfriend just brought her chicken into the vet. Her chicken laid shell eggs her entire life. Then she had an internal lay. The vet said she had Vitamin D deficiency. This is not a lack of calcium. Without enough Vitamin D - or the inability to absorb or use Vitamin D - the calcium can not be absorbed which causes shell-less eggs.

    The vet gave her chicken a Vitamin D supplement. Results yet to be reported. (The vet visit just took place yesterday!)
     
  7. 70%cocoa

    70%cocoa Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,418
    33
    171
    Feb 24, 2011
    Canberra, Australia
    That is true - Vit D is required in order to metabolise calcium. Cod liver oil or fish oil is a good source. But as long as a bird is getting a bit of daylight Vit D deficiency shouldn't be a problem (though perhaps some birds just can't produce it...not sure).
     
  8. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

    70,172
    5,986
    701
    Oct 3, 2009
    Western N.C.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2012
  9. Tivona

    Tivona Chillin' With My Peeps

    601
    52
    161
    Jun 2, 2011
    Oregon
    Thanks everyone for all the tips. I still haven't found a vet for her yet. Had a migraine for most of the day but I will try checking around tomorrow.

    I read about the Vitamin D and shells. She has well tanned feet from being outdoors all day. Any chance its still related to D? Admittedly we have had a lot rainy cloudy weather here in Oregon. Also I just found out a friend of a friend has a chicken doing this in the area. Perhaps it is sunlight? or perhaps an infection. So hard to tell with her acting like she is fine, zipping around full of energy.

    Lydia, how far does the 4oz Poultry Nutri Drench go? It is diluted I am guessing?
     
  10. 70%cocoa

    70%cocoa Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,418
    33
    171
    Feb 24, 2011
    Canberra, Australia
    When I took my duck to the avian vet for this problem (and he diagnosed the bacterial infection) he said that it would not have any other negative effect on her health. A duck with that kind of infection could be expected to be healthy and happy in every other way. It's not life threatening, nor will it make her sicker over the longer term. That's what he said about my duck. She was still behaving like her normal self too.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by