Duckling Help ASAP

LaJazzyJeff

In the Brooder
Dec 22, 2020
13
28
44
Clayton, North Carolina
So Ive hatched two ducklings, Midge and Cricket. Theyre about a week old.
Their brooder is a large tote with packed down wood shavings, a waterer they cant stick their whole bodies in to prevent drowning and constant water splash, a feeder, and a rubber duck called Doctor Duckling (used to make Midge feel less lonely while Cricket took another day and a half to hatch)
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Last night, Midge seemed to be choking and I got very nervous. I took her out and I lifted her head up and kept her neck extended, trying to open her mouth a bit but once I could tell she was breathing, I stopped doing so.
She’s been breathing like shes congested; breathing out of one nostril like the other must be blocked. My boyfriend suggested that we flush salt water through her nostrils but Im not sure how safe that is; he is inexperienced with ducks.
What do I do??? Am I worried about nothing??
 
Last edited:

Isaac 0

Enabler
5 Years
Jul 19, 2016
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Iowa
Any nasal flush should be performed by an avian veterinarian experienced with poultry, as it is easy to aspirate birds this young. Sometimes duckling may try, and eat shavings; whether that be the case with your bird I'm not sure, but changing them onto towels may be good just in case that's what happening here.

As long as she's not open mouth breathing, I think I would give her a little bit more time to dislodge whatever is stuck. Ensure her water dish is deep enough for her to blow her nares out with. Wetting her feed down with a bit more water may make feeding easier for her. Bacterial and fungal growth is accelerated by moistening feed, so change often.
 

LaJazzyJeff

In the Brooder
Dec 22, 2020
13
28
44
Clayton, North Carolina
She was open mouth breathing last night, but that stopped once I took her out of the brooder and adjusted the light. It was too hot for her in there. I’ll remember to wet her food more. We did that for the first couple of days, but once it felt safe, and she was drinking water, we stopped. I just always take out the larger pellets that I feel like she wont be able to swallow (I use Crumbled Flock Raiser by Purina, if I should change this please let me know)

I have to change their water out often due to the fact that theyre always kicking shavings in it.
What do I do if I dont know of an avian veterinarian nearby??
 

Isaac 0

Enabler
5 Years
Jul 19, 2016
24,258
99,061
1,331
Iowa
She was open mouth breathing last night, but that stopped once I took her out of the brooder and adjusted the light. It was too hot for her in there. I’ll remember to wet her food more. We did that for the first couple of days, but once it felt safe, and she was drinking water, we stopped. I just always take out the larger pellets that I feel like she wont be able to swallow (I use Crumbled Flock Raiser by Purina, if I should change this please let me know)

I have to change their water out often due to the fact that theyre always kicking shavings in it.
What do I do if I dont know of an avian veterinarian nearby??

What is the temperature in her pen, and could you post a video of her breathing?
 

LaJazzyJeff

In the Brooder
Dec 22, 2020
13
28
44
Clayton, North Carolina
Using a thermometer in the past was never any good, we really just focus on whether or not the ducklings are comfortable; whether they stay in the light or whether they stay in a corner away from it
Her breathing is really hard to catch on video
I can only really catch the sound of her breathing if shes breathing hard or heavily, like when shes trying to climb up to my shoulder or trying to get out of my hand
 

Isaac 0

Enabler
5 Years
Jul 19, 2016
24,258
99,061
1,331
Iowa
Using a thermometer in the past was never any good, we really just focus on whether or not the ducklings are comfortable; whether they stay in the light or whether they stay in a corner away from it
Her breathing is really hard to catch on video
I can only really catch the sound of her breathing if shes breathing hard or heavily, like when shes trying to climb up to my shoulder or trying to get out of my hand
Heres a video of her breathing: Im not sure how well you may be able hear it.

I did not get the video. You need to post it on a video platform like Youtube, and copy/paste the link here.
 

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