Duck not eating regular food after a disappearance

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Snipes, Nov 21, 2016.

  1. Snipes

    Snipes Songster

    May 15, 2010
    One of my three ducks disappeared a week and a half ago and I am still trying to figure out if he flew away or was killed. Regardless, he has been gone for 10 days and he was their leader. The other two ducks I can tell are trying to establish their hierarchy and seemed to be trying to call to the missing one for a few days (they also started calling when a duck flew by a ways away), but seem to be in okay health. I fed them some treats: roaches, crickets, peas, after the disappearance. Now they seem to be off their normal crumble feed. I thought that maybe their feed was moldy so I got some new stuff but they don't really seem to want to eat it. They will root around and forage for worms and things on the ground, and be perfectly hungry for treats, but they just don't seem to want their old food suddenly. I have seen some threads that it is common for ducks to go through a grieving process and stop eating, so should I count this as normal and expect them to start eating their staple again soon?
    Also, they are inside much of the time now due to my worry about a predator. This will change soon, but I wonder if they are just not quite as hungry since they don't spend as much time outside anymore. I have made it up to them a little bit by bringing them inside on some nights to hang with us and walk around.

    P.S. My dad and someone else saw a lone mallard male along a stretch of beach a few miles from here. I have not found it yet but am hoping it is my missing duck. Fingers crossed!
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I think you are probably right - it's been quite a loss for them, and they are in a different environment right now. Keep tabs on them, try to encourage them to eat, watch their body condition, and chat with them - my ducks seem to respond positively to attention, especially talking with or singing to them.

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