ducks nipping at blood feathers on wing tips...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by hoosiergal40, Apr 9, 2009.

  1. hoosiergal40

    hoosiergal40 In the Brooder

    Jan 2, 2009
    I'm having a problem with my month old ducklings. They now are getting their wing feathers and some have started nipping at the tip of just one duckling's wings. This paticular duckling has new feathers coming in that are lighter than the rest of it's body color, and I'm wondering if that is why the others are so drawn to bite at it's wing tips.
    This morning when I went to check on them I noticed a hole in their bedding that looked like one of them had been on it's side kicking it's legs. I checked all the ducklings and found them all to be ok. Upon closer inspection of the bedding I found blood in shavings where the hole was. I knew then that they had been lying down resting and the one duckling had been bitten on it's wing tip. I rechecked that duckling and sure enough it had a broken blood feather on it's wing tip. Luckily it had stopped bleeding, but the feather is still in place, what is left of it anyway.
    I know my ducks are just bored but how can I help prevent this when they are contained in their brooder pen? (Brooder pen is two large washing machine boxes stapled together & laying on it's side)
    I have some toys in their brooder box, but they pretty much ignore those. I give them kale leaves which they love and that seems to help occupy their time quite well. I also give them green beans and sometimes mixed vegetables. I know they want to be outside, but lately the weather here has been too cold. It snowed on Monday! It almost got warm enough yesterday for me to let them go out but the wind blew hard and that lowered the temps. Any advice?[​IMG]

  2. nettie

    nettie Enslaved by Indoor Ducks

    Nov 20, 2008
    Chicago, IL
    let them swim in the tub! Fill up the water til it just hits their bellies and let them go to town! They'll splash like crazy. It may not be for long (maybe and hur at a time or so, and you should keep and eye on them since they are not fully feathered yet), but it should occupy some of their time.

    If you get them a toy take makes noise, like a parrot you with bells on it, that should help. My ducks love jingle bells.

    This may sound silly, bt i put puppy pads under the shavings in their brooders (for easier clean up) and the 1 month olds now enjoy biting at it since it crinkles. They don't eat it, which is good. (And, my adult ducks have eaten puppy pad before and they were fine, lol)

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