Help! Our muscovy drake is extremely lethargic and chest seems swollen


Jul 5, 2020
We came home last night at 10:30 to find our 6 month old male moscovy laying under our Palm trees and he would not get up for nothing which is extremely unusual. We brought him inside our patio and he spent the entire night and entire day just laying down, and his chest looks a little swollen to me but I can't tell, just because hes laying down. He's drinking water but eating little to nothing, now he seems to keep his eyes closed more. I have no idea what happened to him😢


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How is he doing this morning?

Judging from the picture, he doesn't look like he's feeling well at all, so I think you've done well bringing him inside. Sick birds tend to have lowered body temperature, so if he isn't, move him to an area that's fairly warm, of course, with feed and water provided.

To help prevent the onset of dehydration, you can drip sugar water along his bill every so often, or offer him soupy feed, and see if he'll take to that. Doing that will help keep food/water inside him, but if he continues not to eat/drink, you'll need to tube-feed, as it's almost impossible to get his daily amount of feed/water just by dripping along his bill. Here is some info on tube feeding :

Is he pooping much, if yes, could you post a picture? What is he being fed? Has he or any of your ducks had problems in the past? If you gently palpate his chest, does it feel hard, watery, like a beanbag? Does his breath smell ok?
Withhold food for 24 hours and see if the crop goes down. It sounds like it’s impacted. You don’t want him piling more food into the crop to ferment and cause sour crop.
It can be hard with ducks, since their crop is shaped differently then chickens, and is often harder to feel, but in the picture, the crop looks ok, to me. Here are ducks with a full crop.


The bird in the original picture's head is kinked back, which makes its chest pronounced, but there is no noticeable bulge. I personally, would not withdraw food, even if he's not eating, until more clues are provided to suggest impaction of sorts.

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