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help, one duckling is a midget

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by tomcorden71, Sep 1, 2016.

  1. tomcorden71

    tomcorden71 Just Hatched

    Sep 1, 2016
    We hatched two indian runner duck eggs. One egg was at least 50% bigger than the other. This one hatched first, the second two days later. Big duck (Spongebob) has always been much bigger and more active than little duck (Squarepants). After two weeks little duck seems to be struggling, he only weighs 70g vs. 250g for big duck. He makes much less noise and is less enthusiastic about feeding. Today he appears very docile and not that keen on eating. Big duck is an eating machine, little duck appears to be struggling. We feed them chick crumb, grated cucumber, grated melon, catfood and small slugs.
    What can we do to help little duck? He is happy grazing in the garden and loves slugs, but just appears very docile today and nothing like as active as the big one.[​IMG]
  2. Eric 2016

    Eric 2016 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 29, 2016
    I'm compelled to say that you have two different types of duck. Especially if the eggs were different sizes.
  3. purslanegarden

    purslanegarden Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 10, 2016
    Just make sure you see the little one eating also, and that the big one is not eating everything. With just 2 of them, the little one shouldn't be found to be starving or thirsty and should continue doing OK as far as nutrition. Yes there is the chance he becomes so scared or hen-pecked that he begins losing appetite but again, with 2, you'll have able to give each necessary attention, so just watch out for that kind of health and nutrition concerns.
  4. tomcorden71

    tomcorden71 Just Hatched

    Sep 1, 2016
    Thanks for the advice. Small duck getting is smaller. Big duck is best mates with him, no pecking or bullying, but yes, he does try and get all the food. We have been separating them when we feed them to try and make sure he gets his share. Little duck used to like the chick crumb and grated cucumber, now he only is interested in tiny slugs and brown crickets, he gets really excited about these, but not sure how much he actually eats after pecking them to bits. He has lost another 10 g so we are now syringe feeding him with chick crumb mash mixed with some maple syrup to try and get some energy into him. Its not looking good for him
  5. gal5150

    gal5150 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2016
    Yes, the size in and of itself isn't terribly concerning as they can very well catch up...but LOSING weight is very alarming. Do you have access to a feed store where you could grab some victims and electrolyte powder for their water, just as a general support? It's wonderful that he's into high protein goodies, but as you said, doesn't appear he's getting enough. Can you add some watered down, mashed cat kibble to the slurry you're giving? Poor little dude, keep us posted. Hopefully this is just a bump in the road
  6. purslanegarden

    purslanegarden Out Of The Brooder

    Aug 10, 2016
    It's cute that they chase bugs but that shouldn't be their only kind of food, especially domesticated ducks that are supposed to depend on humans for a bit more food supplements or nutrition. It's important to try to get him eating the feed again, as this should be one of the primary sources of duckling vitamins and nutrition for him. You also should witness him eating the bugs but since you say he might just be playing with them, then it means even these bugs are not helping to feed him.

    One question about your chick crumb, is it non-medicated? Ducklings should have non-medicated chick feed. Of course, that is partially because they eat a lot, but in this case, the little one is barely eating.
  7. tomcorden71

    tomcorden71 Just Hatched

    Sep 1, 2016
    thanks for all the replies, little duck is hanging on in there, but only just.
    So, for the last 3 days he hasn't eaten anything by himself, We have been feeding him liquefied chick crumb with a bit of olive oil and maple syrup via a syringe. He appears to have a problem with his gizzard (ducks don't have crops?). When he gets fed his neck swells up quite a lot, then during the day it goes down. As if he has a blockage. So, yesterday morning he did a lot of snorting and shaking of his head, and a slimey slug was vomited up, along with lots of goo. Since then, he has started eating again on his own. Mashed cat food, liquefied crumb, some grated cucumber and water. He is appearing a bit more duck like, grooming and chirping to his mate. But, he still has a neck that swells up after he eats. So not fixed yet. His weight went down to 55g, and is now back to 74, it was 70 when I weighed him before he went down hill.

    So maybe there is still something stuck? I'm very surprised he is still alive. We have put him in in a separate box to big duck who is now huge and was stepping on him. As far as I can see from the manufacturers the chick crumb is non medicated. It is this stuff

    Any advice on what can be wrong with his neck and how to fix it appreciated.

  8. FARMER3112

    FARMER3112 Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 23, 2016
    one of mine was like that but she became a pretty good sized duck [​IMG]
  9. duckmeister

    duckmeister Chillin' With My Peeps

    Oct 13, 2014
    Red Bluff, California
    Give it some time, the little duck might surprise you. I hatched 2 Rouen's and some call ducks at the same time, one of the Rouen's was barely larger than the call ducks for several weeks, while his sister Rouen was gigantic, but now 3 months along he is bigger than his sister by a lot.
  10. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member

    Jun 24, 2012
    My Coop
    @tomcorden71, your duckling sounds *very* sick. Would be best to get it to a vet ASAP.


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