Help! Injured Female Mallard!

mmike

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 17, 2013
2
0
7
Hello,

I am new to this forum and am only posting because at my local pond there seems to be a female mallard that is injured. I noticed it when she was laying down as her left leg stuck out to her side as opposed to beneath her like normal. When she stood up to walk away she hobbled on one leg and let the other drag sideways until she got into the water. Thinking her leg was broken I contacted my local rehabilitator and was informed to bring the duck in. Upon returning to the pond and finding her again, I noticed that she was standing on her good leg with her bad left leg tucked up underneath her and her foot dangling. She then proceeded to scratch her head with her bad left foot. Seeing this I thought, "Oh ok well she just did something that hurt it for a while but now its fine". However, as I approached her she hobbled off in the same manner she did the last time I saw her (not placing any weight on her leg and lettting it drag slightly). I carefully watched her for some time to see more of how she uses it. While swimming she will occasionally kick with her bad foot to keep her moving in the right direction but she uses it half, if not less than half, as much as her right foot. Also, while swimming it sticks slightly out to the side. When on land, she will not bare any weight on it at all but she can still manage to constantly scratch her head with her leg. Anyone have any ideas what this may be? I am hesitant to remove her from the pond and take her to the rehabilitator. She has a mate that follows her everywhere and I am afraid she has eggs laying around that she may be readying to attend to...Any help as to what I should do would be greatly appreciated. I want to help her but don't want to make things worse by removing her from her home.
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Oct 3, 2009
117,801
139,704
1,982
Mountains of Western N.C.
Hello,

I am new to this forum and am only posting because at my local pond there seems to be a female mallard that is injured. I noticed it when she was laying down as her left leg stuck out to her side as opposed to beneath her like normal. When she stood up to walk away she hobbled on one leg and let the other drag sideways until she got into the water. Thinking her leg was broken I contacted my local rehabilitator and was informed to bring the duck in. Upon returning to the pond and finding her again, I noticed that she was standing on her good leg with her bad left leg tucked up underneath her and her foot dangling. She then proceeded to scratch her head with her bad left foot. Seeing this I thought, "Oh ok well she just did something that hurt it for a while but now its fine". However, as I approached her she hobbled off in the same manner she did the last time I saw her (not placing any weight on her leg and lettting it drag slightly). I carefully watched her for some time to see more of how she uses it. While swimming she will occasionally kick with her bad foot to keep her moving in the right direction but she uses it half, if not less than half, as much as her right foot. Also, while swimming it sticks slightly out to the side. When on land, she will not bare any weight on it at all but she can still manage to constantly scratch her head with her leg. Anyone have any ideas what this may be? I am hesitant to remove her from the pond and take her to the rehabilitator. She has a mate that follows her everywhere and I am afraid she has eggs laying around that she may be readying to attend to...Any help as to what I should do would be greatly appreciated. I want to help her but don't want to make things worse by removing her from her home.
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This is a delimma for sure, she probably won't be able to get away from a predator as quick with an injury and your right she may have eggs , but you know what is the best for her to get well and live as normal as possible or hatch out ducklings and maybe not be able to care for them. I feel for you because it is a tough decision. especially with a mate involved. probably no way to get him so they can be together while she heals? Sounds like it maybe broken.
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HollyDuckFarmer

Songster
7 Years
Jun 30, 2012
2,683
177
208
LP Michigan
Ya it sounds to me like it's broken-- Not that I have ever dealt with broken legs! I would not think it fair to split a bonded pair. If I was to try to get her, well I would plan on trying to get him too.
 

mmike

Hatching
6 Years
Apr 17, 2013
2
0
7
Thank you for your response! So, it does sound like a break? What confuses me about it is that she seems to have no issue in motor movement of any part of her leg or foot. It is strictly walking with her foot that she seems to be avoiding...
 

Miss Lydia

~Gift of God ~ Eternal Life ~John 3:16
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Oct 3, 2009
117,801
139,704
1,982
Mountains of Western N.C.
Thank you for your response! So, it does sound like a break? What confuses me about it is that she seems to have no issue in motor movement of any part of her leg or foot. It is strictly walking with her foot that she seems to be avoiding...
Hard to say since we can't see her and we're not vets, if you can get them both then let the rehabber take care of her ijuries. she'll mate again and have ducklings but she needs to be in top shape to do a good job of it.
 

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