Female Mallard acting "weird"...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by brandilly, Oct 1, 2013.

  1. brandilly

    brandilly Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 3, 2013
    Kelso, Washington
    Alrighty then! My female Mallard, I just noticed, is not acting herself. Usually she is the cocky one, strutting everywhere and leading the pack (I have 4 ducks and a goose; all apparently female). Now, all the other ducks and goose are wandering around, grubbing the grass after some rain, and she is standing on both feet, with her head tucked for sleeping. She'll still 'talk' if I talk to her, but she doesn't move. Pretty soon, she'll lift her head and look for the others and if they are far off (let's say 30 or 40 feet) she'll go after them at a very sedate pace. Then, when she is among them again, tucks the head and stands still. Repeat. Just watched this behavior for half an hour. As I have been busy doing things around the house and outside and not really just hanging with them, I'm not sure how long this has been going on. I know that when I let her out at 7 this morning, she rushed to the food and water dish and had her fill with everyone else, just like every other morning. So I don't really don't know when this started. This is VERY uncharacteristic of her! She is the clown of the group. Always posturing and talking and generally letting everyone else know what they should and should not be doing at any given moment. Sooooo... I know this is vague, but perhaps this is something someone has encountered before and can suggest something. These are beloved pets; I have them for the pure enjoyment of watching and interacting with them! And I am worried about her... [​IMG]
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    You are right to be concerned, and at this point, need to watch as closely as you can.

    It could be a mild virus, something hormonal, a minor injury. It could also be something serious.

    You could try taking her in for a lukewarm bath and watching and talking to her, see if anything looks feels or smells odd.

    Check her feet for bumbles. Watch how she walks. Give her some poultry vitamins. If you think she may have eaten something nasty, give her a teaspoon of food grade activated charcoal in a quart of water to sip on.

    Has she been laying eggs? Is she overdue to lay, perhaps being egg bound?
     
  3. brandilly

    brandilly Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 3, 2013
    Kelso, Washington
    I picked her up yesterday after I posted... felt her all over and checked her feet. Nothing seemed abnormal. I kissed on her and didn't smell anything different. Do they smell different when they are sick? There's so much I don't know. She's still doing it today. I can't tell who lays which eggs, other than the goose egg. I ASSUME it's Petunia's egg since it's almost twice as big. All the rest are roughly the same size. Seems I read that I could 'feel' an egg if it was stuck. Crop felt as it usually does. I don't handle all of them everyday, but enough that I think I might notice if it felt different. She still talks back when I talk to her. I hand fed peas last night and she went after them with a vengeance, just like always. Earlier today she was leading the flock and walking her walk (she REALLY waddles! I call it her Mike Tyson Strut!), doing her head bob. And then for awhile, she'll just stop and hang out with her head tucked. I'll go get some vitamins when I pick up some duck kibble today. Did I read something about apple cider vinegar? I will go look... Thanks for the suggestions, Amiga!
     
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Apple cider vinegar, ACV, is often recommended as a tonic and more. I am sure it has electrolytes in it, and the unpasteurized ACV with the mother also has probiotics. Just remember it raises acidity, and so I would not use it in an aluminum or galvanized waterer because I would worry it would leach metal into the water. I worry alot. I also enjoy the ducks immensely, even more than I worry.

    Terrific terrific news.
     
  5. brandilly

    brandilly Out Of The Brooder

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    Aug 3, 2013
    Kelso, Washington
    Thanks for the info about the ACV! I'll try that!
     

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