Duckling died, and it's my fault. :(

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by SilverPhoenix, Jul 12, 2010.

  1. SilverPhoenix

    SilverPhoenix Bantam Fanatic

    Dec 15, 2009
    Penn Valley, CA
    My rouen hen Eugenie hatched an adorable little duckling about two weeks ago and has been an awesome mother to it. I was keeping them in a secure pen in the henhouse, but the henhouse is pretty stuffy and doesn't allow for much sun, so today, for the first time, I decided to put them out in the run where they'd have more room and could have some fun. I have a pen in the run for the chickens to escape the guinea fowl and larger ducks (who can both be kind of bullies), so I figured that mom and duckling would be fine in there even though it's not that secure.

    Wrong. I came back two hours later and the duckling was outside the safety of the pen with the back of its head pecked. Dead. All of Eugenie's hard work hatching that egg and raising that duckling, just for it to end like this. Just a little earlier the duckling was playing in the water and having a grand time, and now its life is over. It was so cute and happy, I can't believe that baby is gone already, so quickly. [​IMG] The poor little baby...

    I feel so, so awful. If I had only chosen to put them just about anywhere else that was more secure, that duckling would still be alive and well, but I decided to be trusting of all of my other fowl and Eugenie's mothering abilities. I feel guilty and keep crying and crying. I wish I could go back in time and change things so this outcome wouldn't occur, but it's too late for that. [​IMG]

    Any comfort or sympathy is appreciated... I really feel terrible about this and I'm wishing so hard that I could just go back and change it even though I know that won't do any good. [​IMG] I'm just heartbroken that this happened!
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2010

  2. Featherland

    Featherland Songster

    Dec 28, 2007
    [​IMG] So sorry.
  3. deborah

    deborah Songster

    Oct 22, 2007
    Chelsea, MI
    Don't beat yourself up. I understand how you feel; we lost our best mother hen yesterday and I too blame myself. I know the heartache. I've spent so much time crying, my eyes are puffy. I wish I could say something more comforting, but only time will help ease the pain and grief. Just know you are not alone; so many of us at BYC have had similar experiences. The best result is to learn from our mistakes.
  4. kylee2katie

    kylee2katie Songster

    May 6, 2010
    Stuttgart, Arkansas
    I purchased 3 duckings the day before Easter, one for each of my daughters. We kept them in our living room for the first two weeks. I couldn't stand the food, water, poo, etc on my floors any more and fixed a secure place for them outside. My middle daughter begged me to keep them inside for a few more weeks - I put them out - as they were really beginning to LOVE the water, I fixed up a small plastic tub with a board going up for them to get into the water and another to get out. The one on the outside kept sliding, so I placed 2 bricks under it for support. The very first night they were outside, I went to check on them one last time before going to sleep. 2 were swimming happily and one (my middle daughter's duck of course) was laying behind a brick - wedged! He/she had broken a leg and had a huge gash in its back. I sat up all night with it in my lap - doing the death made it through the night and I took it to the vet the next morning. The vet splinted the leg - said it would be fine a few weeks - just give it lots of love and care (of course!) Then he said he'd give it an antibiotic shot to keep it's back from getting infected....he put the needle in (with the duckling in my hands) and it fell over dead! I cussed, screamed, and cried - then had to go home and tell my daughter....and she says" IT'S ALL YOUR FAULT - I TOLD YOU NOT TO PUT THEM OUTSIDE!" Yea, I definately understand your pain....but it will get better...
  5. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

    Jan 11, 2010
    [​IMG] [​IMG] so sorry to hear of what has happened. In hindsight we all have things we would do differently. I saved a little gosling 26 years ago after it had its leg dislocated by a parent standing on it. We were unable to fix the leg- but that was the first ever handraised waterfowl I ever had- he only had a short life- about 6 weks- and died under cicumstances I could have prevented at the time. I was 12 years old and still carry the guilt with me to this day. I always feel such terrible loss when any of my babies ( regardless of if they are still in the egg or fully grown ) as It brings back the memories of how many I have lost over the years- and all the things I could have done differently. I have always had a soft spot for the ones that werent quite right since then- and loosing them is especially hard.

    It is better to think of what a good life the little one had in his short few weeks- and cherish the memory of your little one. Knowing now that you cant trust your other fowl may save the lives of countless others in the future.

    So sorry for your loss.
  6. SilverPhoenix

    SilverPhoenix Bantam Fanatic

    Dec 15, 2009
    Penn Valley, CA
    Thank you so much for the sweet thoughts, everyone. It is terribly upsetting losing a baby like this, but it does help knowing others have been through this type of heartbreak, too... We all make mistakes in keeping our poultry, and unfortunately those mistakes sometimes have to cost a life I guess... It's just so hard. [​IMG] I am trying to chin up and not beat myself up over it. I know things will be fine ultimately, I've lost critters under all kinds of sad and awful circumstances and survived, but it's just so sad thinking of that baby playing in the water this morning and then dead in the dirt just a few hours later. *Sigh* [​IMG] to everyone, and thank you all for sharing your sad stories, too--it helps me feel less alone.

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