1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Ducks fighting! Please help!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by hugitnotnugget, Jan 22, 2017.

  1. hugitnotnugget

    hugitnotnugget Chillin' With My Peeps

    59
    3
    51
    Feb 14, 2016
    We have 2 females and 4 male pekin ducks. One of the males was getting picked on so we put him with the females and the 3 males together. This has been working good for the past months but yesterday I noticed that two of the males were missing feathers on their beck and the other was fine. This morning the two had scabs with blood on their necks. I separated the male who was picking on them. I don't know where to go from here. I can't keep him alone the rest of his life. I don't want to give him away and my parents are completely against getting more females. We have two coops with pens. During the day one of the groups is let out. We alternate them. Is it because of the spring weather we have been having? Any suggestions!?
     
  2. Pyxis

    Pyxis Dark Sider Premium Member

    11,215
    4,321
    466
    Mar 27, 2012
    Vermont
    My Coop
    When male ducks don't have an outlet for their hormones and aren't able to mate with females, they can and will start trying to mate with each other. They will chase each other down, attempt to pin each other to the ground, hold each other by the backs of the neck (which you are seeing result in feather loss and wounds) and then try to forcibly mate with the male they've caught and pinned down. Back when I had just a pair of males as pets, they would do this to each other, but only occasionally and it never resulted in injury. Yours however are injuring each other, and thanks to selective breeding, their mating 'season' now lasts nearly the entire year, so they will keep up this behavior for almost the whole year until their hormones subside temporarily in the winter.

    As you've stated, you can't keep the one male alone for the rest of his life, that's not fair. You can't put him back in with the other males or he will continue to injure them. You can't get more females. You can't put him in the group with the females because you already don't have enough females for the one male (best ratio is 3 to 4 females per male) so adding another male could easily lead to the females becoming overmated, stressed, and injured.

    You're left with only one option and although it stinks, it sounds like you need to find him a new home, preferably with some females he can call his own. I know it's not fun, but you have to put the needs of the animal ahead of yours and do what's best for him and not what's best for you. That's what responsible animal ownership is.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2017
  3. Ravynscroft

    Ravynscroft For the Love of Duck Premium Member

    29,746
    12,421
    606
    Nov 30, 2014
    Middle Tennessee
    Unfortunately, I have to agree with Pyxis... some males do just fine together, but once there's an issue it usually doesn't stop... :(
     
  4. hugitnotnugget

    hugitnotnugget Chillin' With My Peeps

    59
    3
    51
    Feb 14, 2016
    Thanks for your advice...If I were able to convince my parents to get more females, how many would we need? I'm going to look around and see if I can find a home in case I can't convince them. If I were though, should I give the other two away too?
     
  5. calyx15

    calyx15 Just Hatched

    21
    0
    12
    Jan 23, 2017
    They are trying to establish pecking order . I right now have three males with only five females we have to completely separate them and they fight like crazy if we don't . So we have determined who the alpha male is and take in the other two males out I am currently waiting to see if I can sell a few of the males with meeting pairs but I feel your pain it can be very hard having more than one male.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by