Duck Outcast Problem

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by PBGGG, Feb 4, 2014.

  1. PBGGG

    PBGGG Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hey guys,

    Before I talk about the problem, I want to say first that they are pets, and we are NOT getting rid of them or killing them.


    We had 6 ducks before- 4 Swedish blue/indian runner mixes, and two Swedish blue. There were 3 girls and 3 boys.
    One of the Swedish Blue, Marceline, is having some trouble. She is constantly being picked on and the boys keep mating her. Her whole neck is bare. We tried locking her in a cage inside the pen at night, but it would make it worse in the morning.

    A week or so ago we got two more Swedish Blue girls. Still just Marcy. They really have no interest in the other 4 girls. They occasionally go to them.

    Goonder is the only one mating her, but then Gunther comes and holds her neck down.


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    Her neck is worse than that, but those were the only pictures I had.

    Any solutions?

    Thanks!
     
  2. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Separate the girls from the boys for a while, she depends on you to keep her safe and they are abusing her so you need to break the cycle keeping the girls separate till she heals then try putting them all together again, if it starts again I suggest you keep her from them permanently. Isolating just her just makes it worse as you found out.
     
  3. HollyDuckFarmer

    HollyDuckFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ML is correct. You need to have 2 flocks: One drake Flock & One duck Flock. Which means 2 houses and 2 pens. I think adopting more girls was a good idea, but unfortunately I just don't think that's enough. For 3 drakes, I'd have 6 ducks minimum. And that would be only with non aggressive drakes.
     
  4. PBGGG

    PBGGG Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Do you mean separate them all the time, or just at night? They are always with each other all day, so if we separate them all the time they will need to stay in the pen.
     
  5. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    I'd at least keep the girls separate from the drakes till your one is healed and strong again constant mating and rough treatment will stress her out till they could cause her to die from just stress,. If they are harassing her daily when they are all together then yes keep the girls penned and then pen the drakes and let the ducks out. After a couple weeks try them all together and see how they act if they begin to harasses her again then separate again and in while your doing this look for more girls the drakes should have at least 2-4 ducks between them. That's a shame the drakes are working together in this. You haven't mentioned your third drake how is he acting toward this duck?
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2014
  6. HollyDuckFarmer

    HollyDuckFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Yep all the time. Your duck is being abused and she has no defense for it. She can do nothing but take it, and as you have already seen, she's now injured. If it continues, she can be killed. So its up to you to put a stop to it.

    I would never leave her alone with the drakes, not even for one minute.

    It is possible, I suppose, if you are right there alongside her, you could allow them to range together, but only on the idea that you are there and able to put a stop to any bullying that goes on. And with 3 drakes, that will be a chore.

    I would consider Rehoming the most aggressive drake.
     
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  7. Going Quackers

    Going Quackers Overrun With Chickens

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    Yep, yep and yep.. totally agreeing on all points. I do understand your attachment but this will not end well, unfortunately. I had one of my boys from my March hatch last year that i sold because he was not managing well in a multi drake flock and was ganging up on my ladies.

    I run a drake heavy flock, that said it require balance and my ladies safety and well being is always my priority. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2014
  8. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    PBGGG,

    I agree with the advice you have been getting, and I want to add that due to some really convoluted duck social behavior that to this day I do not understand, I had to run the new trio of buffs separate from the runners for months. It was, oh, how do we say, some extra work[​IMG]

    And

    Romy's well-being depends on me. She was the brunt of Bean's frustration, and I was the only one who could protect her. I split the Day Pen in two, moved a swim pan to the buff side, and either alternated which flock was in the garden, or set temporary fence up and split the garden area. The buffs would go outside first in the morning, get secured, then the runners and Romy would go out. As Romy would run past the buffs' pen, Bean would run alongside her. If for any reason he got out, he would immediately pin Romy. It was a weird territorial battle between Bean and the runners. I ought to write a short story about it.

    But after a while, and some work, we have one flock again. Bean and Romy do mate, but just from time to time, and he's hop on, hop off, not constantly at her.

    I keep watch, and pray that the balance continues to be good.

    You would think that with one drake and twelve - yes twelve - ducks, we would not have this kind of problem. But we did. And separating them helped me keep Romy safe while we readjusted the flock dynamic.
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2014
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  9. HollyDuckFarmer

    HollyDuckFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I want to add and ask if you're doing anything for your duck? I think I'd do lots of baths, and perhaps some Blue Kote on the neck. Vitamins in her drinking water and perhsps a small increase in % protein to hopefully encourage those feathers to grow back in quickly. I think that would help her.
     
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  10. PBGGG

    PBGGG Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Marceline has been separated from the others by a small pen within the larger duck pen. last night we did not separate her and this morning all 8 ducks are napping on our back porch together. It's just about a week since the 2 newest girls moved in to the flock and from what we have seen they are still finding their own places within the group. This is the first day Marcy has been with the group in weeks. When this bad business started, Marcy was hanging out on a different side of the house from the others, then gradually she was getting closer. We are going to think about adding 2 more girls which will give us 3m and 7f but in the meantime we are going to keep watching and listening . By the way, Marceline still does the "neck dance" to the lead male. From what we have seen and heard Goonder mates her about 2 times a day. Thanks for all the advice.
     

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