Just rescued a duck... HELP!!! (never had a duck before)

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Ravynia_30, Feb 7, 2011.

  1. Ravynia_30

    Ravynia_30 In the Brooder

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    Ok.. So..

    I was out with friends, and they decided I had to see the cute duckies sleeping at Rainbow Lake. They drove me there at like 10pm, and when we get there I see something on the dock. Looks kinda like a rumpled white jacket. I get closer, and I think it's a dead duck. I get even closer and realize it's alive. My friend says "Yeah, that's the duck with a broken leg. Was here three days ago, and looked a lot better" and lean down to pet it.. Poor thing is sitting on the dock crusted with ice. All it's feathers are ice crusted together, and it doesn't even attempt to get away. So I picked it up and took it to the headlights of the car, where I could see the broken leg.

    I then wrapped him in a blanket and took him home. I got him warm and dry, offered him some room temp water and he drank and drank.. and then I fed him some all natural bran flakes and he ate about 2 handfuls before I said he couldn't have anymore. I don't know if bran is good or bad for him and his eyes are sunken in a bit.. and I thought maybe he might be slightly dehydrated. I thought maybe like some other birds he shouldn't eat much till I know he's not dehydrated at all.

    The leg DOES appear to be broken... but not severely. There is swelling, and tenderness, but he seems able to hobble on it (now that he is home and warm and dry).

    After doing some research I am pretty sure I am dealing with a white mallard.. and I think it's a drake. The only sounds he's made are very quiet, and he has one very curly feather at the top of his tail, that I've read may be the "drake feather".

    Actually.. the broken leg seems to be the least of his concerns. He has a really bad mite infestation. I did MORE research and I believe he has NFM (northern fowl mites). I have pyrethrin based dog shampoo, but wasn't sure if I could use that on him. Also I have both dog and cat frontline... but not sure if I can use that on him either. I have 5% sevin dust as well... but the mites are clustered around his eyes really bad, and I didn't want to get sevin dust in his eyes. I've had it in mine and it burns... BUT.. I have food grade diatomaceous earth (de), so I rubbed it alllll over him, his head, neck, wings, back, chest, legs, and vent.

    He is now asleep in my bathroom... in a box.. with his blanket.. in front of a little radiator style electric heater. He has water available but no food.. and I turned off the lights, and he responded my tucking his head under his wing.

    I don't know what to feed him. I've googled it and get such varied results. Everything from weeds and bugs.. to chicken layer mash... to cracked corn and wheat. I have chickens and layer mash - so if he can eat that, that would be good... but I want him to have the right nutrition so he can heal.

    he is SOOO sweet. all he wants to do when I am trying to examine or treat him is snuggle his head up against my neck. I would take him to the vet, but the vets up here are all dog and cat vets and I have exactly $2.00 to my name. being that he seems to be a common mallard, I suspect game and fish would put him down.

    I apologize for the run on sentences, I ramble a bit when I am tired. I appreciate ANY advice you can give me...

    Thanks,

    Rhonda
     
  2. eenie114

    eenie114 Completly Hopeless

    First, he can eat the chicken food.

    I suggest calling a local or semi local wildlife rescue center, one that specalizes in birds would be good.
     
  3. Birdcrazy

    Birdcrazy Songster

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    Firstly, its a very sweet thing you've done!! A lot would just leave him to suffer
    I hope I help, but I feed my ducks wheat (common to get) and duck crumble mix - any other bugs and stuff he'd probably get from your garden once he can walk. Definately sounds like he's a drake and I'm pretty sure there is duck friendly shampoo or wash that you can get, maybe search for an old post on here? I thought I saw something once. Definately a wildlife rescue center would be good, or pay a call to an out of town vet for advice.
    You can buy vitamins to put in water (Katherinad is the vitamin pro [​IMG] ) which would help, also with the broken leg you may have to wait til the swelling goes down before you can asses the best next step
    Since he's so friendly and cuddly maybe hes been dumped at the pond? I've heard alot of people do that -- either that or he recognises who his rescuer is [​IMG]
    If there's no where to take him or the costs are too much, warmth and love may be enough to get him through [​IMG]

    Good luck, really hope I helped at all!
    [​IMG]
     
  4. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

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    If he is so tame- he could well be someones pet that flew away and has either been attacked- by a predator- or sadly even a human- or been hit by a car. Its sad that he sat there for three days and no-one else picked him up - But at least he now has you.

    As for food- what you give your chickens is better than just plain bran at the moment - and you are right in thinking he is dehydrated. Keep the fluids up to him.
    Even though the injury happened a while ago he could still go into shock- so keeping him warm - like you already are is very important. The risk of infection is high- and his leg may have to be set properly in order for the bone to knit properly again but he may still be able to walk around enough on a badly healed leg - I understand that vet bills for a duck that isnt yours must be out if reach financially. Keeping him as immobile as possible is best- and if possible can you splint the leg without causing him too much pain. Keep an eye and the leg for an increase in swelling- or signs of infection. In a few days- a swim in some warm water may be good for him- it will allow him to move his leg without his body weight on his bad leg- and Im sure he would feel much better clean. - it might help to get rid of some of the lice too.

    Is there any chance your local feed store may extend you a small line of credit to pick up a few items to help duckie?? If you explain the situation- they may be willing to help out a bit if they can. You could pick up some proper avian lice control- as well as some antibiotics and a multivitamin powder that can be added to his water.
     
  5. Ravynia_30

    Ravynia_30 In the Brooder

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    I am a waitress, and I work tomorrow... so hopefully, I will make some money and can get him to Payson to see a vet. Otherwise, despite living in a very rural area.. there are not very many rehabbers up here, and the three I know of specialize in raptors... so it's likely he is stuck with me.

    I have some on the job training as a vet tech (from 11 years ago), the ability to google, and the good fortune to have been able to help a friend of mine (that is now passed away) who was a rehabber... I am much better with mammals, but I am sure I can help this duck given the right information.

    I have been browsing the site, it's rather informational.. but sorta time consuming... so any advice about the mites is welcome.

    Thank you both for answering about the food... I will give him some chicken food in the morning, and after work price some duck crumble mix...

    being that he is a white duck.. I have taken to calling him "Aflac"....
     
  6. treldib

    treldib Songster

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  7. treldib

    treldib Songster

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    Southern California
    Also, give him a small tub of water to bathe in. This may help with the mite problem as well as the fact that ducks need water deep enough to stick their head into and clear their nostrils, or they can get eye and nostril problems/infections.
     
  8. Ravynia_30

    Ravynia_30 In the Brooder

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    OMG! So much help! THANK YOU!! From me and Aflac... I will go to Spur Feeds tomorrow after work and see what all I can get for him. We had snow here on the mountain recently and some good tourist travel.. so there is a decent chance of me making more than $15 tomorrow at work.

    Yeah, he is definitely NOT clean. He smells bad.. Like stagnant lake water. and DE dust... lol. Spur feeds has been very good to me and my pets in the past, and while not likely to extend credit, may slightly lower prices to help Aflac out. They still need to make a profit, but they have cut me deals in the past.

    Aflac is SO calm with me, I assume he was a pet at some point. I hear about people ditching their pet ducks at local lakes all the time, but I never thought about it much before tonight.

    I have to admit I am disappointed in my friend. She knew he was injured and left him there. She KNOWS I can't leave an animal in need and she didn't tell me about him 3 days ago. But, I am pretty sure she had to show me the pretty duckies tonight because she knew I would help him... so better late than never.

    I have him in a box in my bathroom.. but i don't have him crated. Don't really have a duck size crate. I have a large parrot cage on my porch, but there is no way I can get it into the house.. and I don't wanna kick him out in the cold yet. I did NOT think this thru all the way before I brought him home. I can leave him in the bathroom... but my husband learned his lesson when I tried free-range house chickens, and won't be pleased.

    I hope to house him in my chicken coop when he gets well. I have a large coop with attached henhouse, 5 hens and no roosters, and I've heard many times that ducks and chickens can co-habitate. BUT, he has to be parasite free and able to get around, I won't risk my girls.... If he can't go in my chicken coop... my husband will make me re-home Aflac.. and frankly, I think he's been thru enough.

    If you can't tell.. I get attached quickly... [​IMG]

    It's time to tuck my head under my wing.. I will check back here tomorrow after work and update what all I got for him...

    THANK YOU!!!
     
  9. Ravynia_30

    Ravynia_30 In the Brooder

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    Quote:He has a 2 foot by 2 foot tub that is about... 6 inches deep.. it was my dog's water dish till Aflac got here, then I scrubbed it up and gave it to him. That should work, right?
     
  10. duckyfromoz

    duckyfromoz Quackaholic

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    That tub will be plenty for him- especial while he recuperates. As for your friend- she has done the right thing now- if she doesnt know much about poultry she may not have realised that he needs help.

    I hope thing work out for you at work and the feed store. Aflac may regain strength and heal quickly now he has someone looking out for his needs. he is a very lucky duck to have you.
     

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