Lesson Learned


In the Brooder
Mar 24, 2018
My Coop
My Coop
Hello everyone!!! I have been an avid reader of this site for a long time now, and joined today to share my story so that someone does not make the same error I did.

The back story is I have been reading and learning from this site for the last 2 years. Last spring we decided to start our flock. Coop built, night run built, main run built, brooder ready, and GO. We bought 6 RIR pullets from TSC, and while we were at it, 2 yellow, fuzzy Pekins came home too.

Move forward to last summer, the duck turned out to be Drakes. No issues at the time, they would run after the hens, but after reading on here, I added an additional house, separate run, feeder, water, the whole 9 yards. Then added a few females, and Peace was one again established.

Fast forward to yesterday. My daughter comes home from school and calls me at work to tell me the boys somehow got under the fence and into the chicken run. I get home an hour later to them still on the chicken side, quacking loudly. I get them back to their run, and find my favorite hen Hollas covered in mud looking terrified. The rest of the girls were up in the coop where the ducks can not reach them. Hollas always was their leader from the beginning. I pick her up and look her over. Muddy, missing a few neck feathers, but otherwise, fine. Clean her up, dry her off, then off to bed she went.

This morning, the flock does their normal running to me so they can free range, open the door, out they come, 1,2,3,4,5..... Where is Hollas? I find here in the coop hiding in a corner. I picker her up and again check her out, all looks well, until I see what look like a slight vent prolapse. OK, back in the house, get on BYC and start reading. 1/2 hr later, back outside to quarantine, clean, etc. I go out to check on her about lunch time, and she is in her nesting box. I look he over again, and now it looks like she has an egg partially coming from her vent. Now a warm water bath to help her relax to get the egg out. 20 minutes of that and nothing. As Im holding her, she is not fighting me mind you, her head is getting droopy, almost like she is falling asleep. I dry her off, and place her in a clean area. An hour later, still no egg and she can t even move she is so week. Her breathing was so slow, I tried water and her head just fell into the bowl... My poor girl was suffering so much, I made the decision to end it. She never complained, didn't fight, she opened her eyes just enough to tell me she was ready to go.
Afterwards, before I buried her next to our dog, I pressed on her rear and the egg and her entire Oviduct came out all in one piece, egg inside, with nothing attached!!!! I find some solace in the fact there is no way she would have made it much longer, and I ended her suffering. RIP Hollas.

Ducks are smart
Check your fences
Ducks will kill chickens


Herding ducks and Wrangling chickens
Jan 8, 2017
Sorry for your loss. Sounds like the drake(s) mated with the hen. :(
Do they have their own duck hens? If so how many?


6 Years
May 17, 2014
Oh man, I'm so sorry. This makes me happy I got rid of my drake. Never knew they were that smart...

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
So sorry this happened. There are a number of folks on BYC who have kept drakes with their chicken flocks and insist that all is well with such a mixed flock. Having seen a drake in action, I would NEVER EVER consider having a drake in proximity to chickens. You did the right thing by keeping your drakes penned separately from the chickens in the first place. So sad that the fence was breached. :hugs

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