Mallard Drake with Drooping Feathers

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by LDinGrassValley, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. LDinGrassValley

    LDinGrassValley Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 30, 2013
    Hello all,

    My name is Larry and I have two Mallard Drakes about 3 years old. Have had them from 1 day old from a local hatchery here in California. We recently moved to Grass Valley California from the SF Bay Area about 4 months ago. Both of my 'boys' have settled in fine but do miss the freedom they enjoyed in the Bay Area. With more predators in the mountains and the fact that they've been moved, I decided to clip their wings. Well, I always clipped Speedy's wings but this is the first time I clipped Mr. Peepers wings as Speedy always liked to take off.

    One of them 'Speedy' is starting to have his side feathers droop (both sides) and his lower feathers (between the legs/to rump) are not looking as crisp as his brothers 'Mr. Peepers'.

    I'm not sure if it's normal and searching the web hasn't helped figure it out.

    Does anybody have any input on what may be happening or if it's medically necessary to seek help from a vet?

    It's been my experience that it's not easy to find a vet knowledgable with ducks, so I'm hopeful somebody on this site can help me and Speedy.

    Speedy is cleaning himself as normal
    Eating fine
    Alert, etc.

    He is 'acting' just like Mr. Peepers, it's just his feathers are drooping.

    Thanks,
    Larry
     
  2. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Larry, welcome to the Duck Forum!

    My first thought is a question. Might he be getting ready to molt?
     
  3. LDinGrassValley

    LDinGrassValley Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 30, 2013
    No, he molted about 2 months ago.

    He nor his brother has ever held his feathers this way in the past; post or pre-molt.

    It began about one week ago but it was just a few feathers. He's been the Phillis Diller of ducks as he's more like Oscar Madison and has never been as clean spirited as his brother. But has never had this.

    Oh, just noticed I can attach a photo; I'll capture one of him tomorrow and post it.
     
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Sometimes toxicity can cause loose feathers. Try adding a teaspoon of food-grade activated charcoal (I get mine at a pharmacy) to their water. It binds toxins.

    Take a close look at the feathers for mites.

    That's all I can think of right now - if anything else comes to mind, I will send it on.

    I feel like something in the environment, that is either toxic or stressful may be at work.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. LDinGrassValley

    LDinGrassValley Out Of The Brooder

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    Dec 30, 2013
    [​IMG]
    A photo of Speedy this morning, yesterday the feathers that cover his wings to the side/bottom of his body were drooping to almost touching the ground (about halfway between the bottom of his body and the ground).

    Thanks for the suggestion Amiga, I'll get some of the activated charcoal today.

    This morning Speedy is looking better. Yesterday his feathers were drooping to well below his body. This morning they seem to be more in-line with where they normally are.

    I'll keep a close eye on him and see if his feathers continue to improve.

    To introduce my boys, here's two photos with Bailey (lab) just after they came home from the hatchery;
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Cheers,
    Larry
     

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