Female duck problems

Jemima Duck

Chirping
Jun 10, 2019
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So I have a male Runner, and two Female runners. I bought one of my females (Jemima) and my male from one breeder, and then the other female (Juliét) from a different breeder. When introducing the new runner a few months ago, everything went perfectly, they got on instantly! The new duck soon became the leader of the flock because she was a month older (I assume that's why anyway, she was also louder than the other two). At this point, non were really sexually mature. Skip forwards another few months to now, and it seems since becoming sexually mature the dynamics have changed. Now the other female duck (Jemima,who is incidentally a lot bigger then the other female) will constantly tell the other female off ( she will do that sideways head Bob and quack), to the point where the other female will just sit separately to the other two now. It's very saddening to see. The drake only seems to want to mate with Jemima too, which is saddening because Juliét has been a consistent layer for a while, and I wanted to incubate her eggs.

I'm honestly not sure what to do at this point, I just hope that it's hormones because Jemima has only just started laying (she's been laying soft shells).

Any input would be very very appreciated! Thanks
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
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That is so unusual for Runners mine are like a pack my Runner drake mates with all 6 of his females even the 2 Buffs that hatched with them very tight group. For the soft shell are you providing extra calcium? And stress may have something to do with it too. Poor girl. Any way you can separate the two females together and see how Jemima acts with out the drake around?
 

chickens really

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Soft shell can happen with new layers before the egg machine is fully working.
Don't be to quick to think they are outing her. They understand Duck behaviour and I bet she prefers her own company. Also I'm thinking the Drake breeds her but prefers the other Hen. All my Hens head bob and chatter to each other.
 

Jemima Duck

Chirping
Jun 10, 2019
91
186
91
That is so unusual for Runners mine are like a pack my Runner drake mates with all 6 of his females even the 2 Buffs that hatched with them very tight group. For the soft shell are you providing extra calcium? And stress may have something to do with it too. Poor girl. Any way you can separate the two females together and see how Jemima acts with out the drake around?

Thank you for the response! I know, it's so strange! I will try separating the drake, thank you for the advice. My first thought was to separate Jemima, considering I'm sure she's sick of all of Gerald's (drake) nonsense. But even then, when the drake and Juliét were in the pool, he still wouldn't mate with her (when they get in the pool, he always seems to mate Jemima before getting out). Like Chickens really said, I hope he is mating with Juliét too, otherwise I bet Jemima is being overmated.

About the soft shell, I have a dish of oyster shell out for the ducks, it goes down alarmingly fast haha, but I think that's mainly Juliét. Funnily enough Jemima laid a nice hard-shell egg today, so I hope she will continue doing so. Another odd thing about Jemima is that she laid a hard shelled egg, and then 3 soft shelled eggs in one day last week... Not sure how concerning that is.
Soft shell can happen with new layers before the egg machine is fully working.
Don't be to quick to think they are outing her. They understand Duck behaviour and I bet she prefers her own company. Also I'm thinking the Drake breeds her but prefers the other Hen. All my Hens head bob and chatter to each other.

I really hope you're right, she does that protective 'this is MY mate' thing and pushes Juliét away... Although she is an independent duck on general. Thank you for your reply too!
 

chickens really

Crazy Mother of Goats
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Thank you for the response! I know, it's so strange! I will try separating the drake, thank you for the advice. My first thought was to separate Jemima, considering I'm sure she's sick of all of Gerald's (drake) nonsense. But even then, when the drake and Juliét were in the pool, he still wouldn't mate with her (when they get in the pool, he always seems to mate Jemima before getting out). Like Chickens really said, I hope he is mating with Juliét too, otherwise I bet Jemima is being overmated.

About the soft shell, I have a dish of oyster shell out for the ducks, it goes down alarmingly fast haha, but I think that's mainly Juliét. Funnily enough Jemima laid a nice hard-shell egg today, so I hope she will continue doing so. Another odd thing about Jemima is that she laid a hard shelled egg, and then 3 soft shelled eggs in one day last week... Not sure how concerning that is.


I really hope you're right, she does that protective 'this is MY mate' thing and pushes Juliét away... Although she is an independent duck on general. Thank you for your reply too!
Always a lead Hen and a Drake all other Hens follow behind in rank. If you had more Hens you wouldn't see the exclusion..
The dropping of yolks and producing an egg is because she isn't regular yet.
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
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I hope you notice a difference soon. When my oldest drake died he had one duck left and she hadn't ever been with the other Muscovy's since I had to keep them separated or the other drake would beat up on my old guy. It took about 6 months before the flock accepted the "New" Muscovy but she was the oldest of them all. Now she is like she has always been with them. In my pack of Runners the leader is the Runner drake. All the girls fall all over him and they all stick together like glue. I always say all for one and one for all is their motto. Never has on been excluded. You can crack and egg open and tell if one is fertile buy the bulls eye so try that it will tell you if Juliet is getting mated.
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Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium Feather Member
11 Years
Oct 3, 2009
117,486
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Mountains of Western N.C.
Forgot to mention yes when they first begin to lay it takes a bit of time to get the system working properly. Soft shell can be normal only time to be concerned is when it continues. Then you might want to consider adding calcium citrate to their treats for a week or so. @DuckyDonna can tell you how she does it.
 

Jemima Duck

Chirping
Jun 10, 2019
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91
Mmm, I have been doing the egg-cracking. But I'm not entirely sure if they're fertile still because they all look like a bull's eye. I'm glad your flock sorted themselves out!
 

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