Limping/dying ducks

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Muscovynmore, Nov 7, 2012.

  1. Muscovynmore

    Muscovynmore Out Of The Brooder

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    Okay, so early this spring I bought a dozen Ancona duck eggs and ten hatched. They were overall a healthy, cheerful bunch, but a few months into their lives I found one of the males laying on its side one morning, dead. No marks, no symptoms.

    In September, eight little second-generation Anconas hatched. One broke its leg and stayed in the house with a splint until the bone healed. But then, about a month ago, I found one of the ducklings dead on its side. Its legs were out behind it, but its neck was in a natural position. A week later, a second duckling died, too. Again, no symptoms of anything. Just a dead duck. I'd like to point out that my ducklings free-range during the day and are shut up at night with food and water. The adult ducks got shut up in a different pen at night until a week ago.

    Two days ago, I let the quacks out of the pen and saw that a few of the adults were limping a bit. Nothing serious, I thought. Until that night, when I had to find both a duck and a duckling with a flashlight. The duck had runny nostrils and a cough. The duckling mostly looked sleepy. Both birds had slightly fluffed head feathers and looked sort of like they'd been crying. Anyway, my parents and I looked up diseases on the Internet and picked the most promising option out of our livestock medicine cabinet: Tylan 50.

    So Dad and I went outside and gave an oral adult dose of 1mil and a duckling dose of 1/2mil to the Anconas and their roommates the Black Swedishes. It's funny how "limping" doesn't mean "slow." I made sure they had clean water and food and tried to think happy thoughts.

    The next morning everyone was still alive. One of the drakes that had been limping seemed completely better. The duck that I'd had to hunt down was neither better nor worse. Two ducklings were now limping. In the evening, the first duckling was laying on its side, dead. Dad and I gave all the non-healthy ducks another dose of Tylan 50.

    This morning, a few more ducks were limping. The one that was badly off seemed to be improving, as did the second limping duckling. I gave some medicine to a new sick female (adult) and felt a bit optimistic. Naturally, the duckling was died between visits.

    Extra info:
    1) The Anconas stopped laying nearly a month ago. They do have a light at night.
    2) The poop of the sick birds is green.
    3) Two two-week-old Muscovy ducklings died this afternoon. It's possible I tracked the germs, but they're in a brooder and shouldn't have been exposed.
    4) None of my Muscovies have gotten sick. Or the Black Swedishes. (I love the irony behind this—expensive, rare breed? Best-colored ones dying? Check. Check.)
    5) The two ducklings that died were only half-feathered. Their siblings have everything except wings.
    6) Some of our chickens caught "the cold" in the spring and were given an antibiotic, but ducks drink too much for that particular medicine.

    So, please help? I'm sorry the post was so long, and if anyone has questions, I'm definitely willing to answer.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2012
  2. Smoochie

    Smoochie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm not a duck person but didn't want your message to go unanswered. Sounds like your flock has a virus and possibly everyone needs to be treated with Tylan. Sorry I am not much help.
     
  3. Muscovynmore

    Muscovynmore Out Of The Brooder

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    Well, I'm definitely going to be giving my Muscovy ducklings a dose. Three were dead this morning. Yippee. The Anconas are no better and no worse, so I'm not even sure the Tylan works. . . .

    (Thanks for the reply, Smoochie. :)
     
  4. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member Project Manager

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    You should also give them a heat source... And you should send the body/bodies of to your state lab for a necropsy. It's free or close to it in most states. California's will let you Fed-X with their account number which is supposed to be a lot cheaper, so ask your lab if they do the same.

    Sorry for your losses.
     
  5. kuntrygirl

    kuntrygirl Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

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    Sorry to hear about your losses? How old were they when they died?
     
  6. Muscovynmore

    Muscovynmore Out Of The Brooder

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    I just realized how long it's been since I last posted. Whoa. Long story short, no vets cover domestic ducks. I did take a duck in for a necropsy and the vet said that the best bet was aflatoxins. So Dad and I ammonia'd and roasted a special batch of grain (we grind and mix our own feed) and they are possibly starting to get better.

    I started with 17 ducks. I am down to 6. (Four females, two males.) I have lost buff and likely brown. I have no idea what color eggs I lost, because sick ducks don't lay . . . anyway, there's the update, pleasant as it is.
     
  7. casportpony

    casportpony Team Tube Feeding Captain & Poop Inspector General Premium Member Project Manager

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    Did they give you a necropsy report? Run any tests?
     
  8. Muscovynmore

    Muscovynmore Out Of The Brooder

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    Yes, the necropsy report said that the bird had an enlarged liver, showed no signs of infectious disease, and the most likely problem was aflatoxins. They ran tests, too, but I those didn't show anything/came back negative.
     
  9. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

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    I have just read through your thread.... interesting to me as I have had a few ducks die.... limping followed by death within two days - mainly my Indian Runners, I have two ducks ( breed unknown ) that are limping right now, all of my Muscovy ducks are fine....all are fed the same and are housed together.... so weird!

    Hope yours get better very soon!

    Suzie
     
  10. Muscovynmore

    Muscovynmore Out Of The Brooder

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    Aw, that's terrible, Suzie! I'm so sorry about your ducks. I'd suggest keeping their bedding as clean and dry as possible, and trying a different feed. And getting a necropsy.

    Glad your Muscovies are fine. I wish mine would start laying again . . . [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2012

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