Feather picking

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by duckins, Jan 28, 2013.

  1. duckins

    duckins Chillin' With My Peeps

    378
    28
    113
    Dec 29, 2012
    Gladys, Va
    Posted few weeks ago about crested 2 mon old having feathers plucked from crest applied neo few days fuzz started growing back. I have 4 crested hens they r now 3 mon. And have started this junk again plucking each others feather from crest they have not broken skin but little heads are red, bald, and irritated except one. I watch them they get to arguing over a little blade of grass and starting pecking each others crest. They were hatched and raised together they get plenty of feed water and free range time their are housed in 10x10 run separated would be really hard bc I would have to split all four neo only seems to encourage more plucking. Read a lot of home remedies on here just want to no if any one would try or have had success with the following, keeping in mind crest is very close to their eyes. Blu kote, red pepper mixed w/ Vaseline rub on skin, Vicks vapor rub. Please let me know I don't want to do anything to encourage more plucking or harm their health thanks.
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

    23,015
    2,005
    491
    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    My first thought was Blu-Kote, but I don't have experience with that. Just heard that it might not be picked at by other ducks somewhere.

    Do you give them vitamins? They may just have a bad habit, or maybe they have a slight nutrient deficiency (I have been reading about how vitamins really affect brain function) that is contributing to it.

    Sounds like they have plenty of space. Oh,ducks.
     
  3. duckins

    duckins Chillin' With My Peeps

    378
    28
    113
    Dec 29, 2012
    Gladys, Va
    Have used blu kote on dogs before but it s runny until dry. I give them once a week probiotic and electrolyte mix in water haven't been faithfull with brewers yeast lately. Do u suggest another kind of vitamin? They puzzle me this group argues like none of my other young ducks ever did their beaks sounds like little swords clashing. As far as home remedies little hesitant till I hear of others having success.
     
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

    23,015
    2,005
    491
    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    I use Vitamins and Electrolytes Plus, but most any poultry vitamin should do it. Flax seed flour sprinkled on their food would add some omega 3's which are good for nerve cells. Maybe a sprinkling of dry cat kibble in their food for some extra vitamin D . . . just trying to think of anything that might support a healthier nervous system.
     
  5. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

    3,215
    142
    243
    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    I had muscovy ducklings that started pick their hatchmates feathers about 2 weeks ago. I seperated the culprits, now 3 drakelets. I have kept their protein levels higher than recommended and I leave feed down all of the time even though they have no lights at night. It has stopped but I am hesitant about putting the 3 back with the other 10.

    Are yours fully feathered now? Has this continued since you first posted?

    It can become a habit, which is kind of what it sounds like. They get mad, they pluck.

    I know in chickens crests are sometimes trimmed so that other birds don't pluck the easy target.

    I don't think pepper would work its not a deterant for ducks (I used to add it to my feed so one of my dogs would stop eating it).

    You could dab Blu kote on as a preventative for infection but I don't think it will stop them.

    Did you get them from a breeder or a hatchery? If so, maybe contact them and see what they suggest.
     
  6. duckins

    duckins Chillin' With My Peeps

    378
    28
    113
    Dec 29, 2012
    Gladys, Va
    I can here them chanting your name they are nuts about cat food! They run my poor cat away from his food bowl all the time of course my cat likes duck food go figure. On the cat food note I wonder if I mix in my males feed if they'll start eating their feed again? Seen nutri drench in feed store but only having ducks for 1 year I thought it was a chick product. Flax seed flour can that be purchased at grocery store. How long have you had ducks I ask bc u are very wise. Thanks for all your help.
     
  7. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

    23,015
    2,005
    491
    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Can't hurt to try the cat food - not more than a sprinkling at a time, the kind I use is Eagle Pak and it is I think about 30% protein. Yes, flax seed flour like in the grocery store, or you may be able to save a few bucks by getting bulk flax seed (some stores carry it that way) and running it through the blender for a minute.

    We got our runners three years ago. I had some Pekins many years ago. I read about ducks quite a bit. The Duck Forum is a tremendous source of information and encouragement, isn't it?
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2013
  8. duckins

    duckins Chillin' With My Peeps

    378
    28
    113
    Dec 29, 2012
    Gladys, Va
    Yes it is thank you
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by