Duck passed unexpectedly/ have questions.


In the Brooder
May 8, 2016
My Indian Runner we found dead yesterday. I am so devastated and am confused as to what happened. I checked on them mid morning and they were fine. My husband found Tammy dead inside of the coop. He said that she didn't look injured and I had him check down her throat to see if she chocked and he didn't see anything. He said the only thing he could think of was her neck was laying a little weird, like she may have broke it, but I don't know how she would have. They are in a 10x10 run with a coop attached fully enclosed. I haven't noticed them being bothered by any animals, ( we are in a subdivision so it would be cats and birds for he most part). Now I am just scared that something is going to happen to the rest of them. Tammy was the sweetest of them all, and my heart is just broken. We got them as babies at the end of April, so from when we got them they are coming close to three months old. Could this be a male issue? I just notices one of the Rouens is getting the green on the head which would make him a him, correct? The other two that I am unsure about are the Kakki cambells. I tried to snap a few pictures with my phone, but they get weird when I take my phone out lol.

We are new to having ducks so my questions are, are there things that can cause ducks to just die all of a sudden? And can anyone tell by my terrible pictures if my ducks are male or female? I am scared I might have more than one male. If I do, when is that an issue?

Thanks so much. I am just so scared and don't want anything else bad to happen.

Really sorry you lost your duck. I had something very similar happen to one of my ducks. She was fine when I put them in at night but I found her dead in the coop the next morning. I paid to have a necropsy done on her and there was nothing conclusive. The vet's thoughts were that it was either a genetic issue or botulism. Botulism is caused by them eating rotting vegetation or meat and is the most common reason in sudden deaths. It can kill in as little as 3 hours.

If you haven't witnessed the drake heavily mating the females, I doubt that is your cause. You should easily be able to sex by voice at this age. Ducks will quack and drakes will have a raspy, frog-like voice.

Unfortunately sudden deaths are a reality of having ducks and chickens. This could just be an isolated incident. You could have your remaining ducks checked out but chances are, if they are acting normal, they are fine.
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