My Louie-duck flew away! :(

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by cymbaline, Mar 23, 2012.

  1. cymbaline

    cymbaline Chillin' With My Peeps

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    My Louie is a male mallard, about 11 months old. I've had him since about Day 3, and for all but about 2 months or so, he's lived in the house with me (last summer I would put him out in a pen during the day with a pool - after a while I just dedicated one bathtub inside for him, lol). He's a momma's boy; quacks when I get out of sight and usually follows me when I leave the room (follows me around the house in general really...sits on the couch with me or under my computer chair). I take him out to play in the yard sometimes and he usually eats some mud and sometimes flies around the house, but never far (like 30 yards, usually less). I took him out to play last Sunday morning and after a few minutes he just took off! I understand it's nearing the end of mating season, so I guess his "urges" just got too strong to resist. He was already starting to fade to eclipse plumage, which from what I can tell it seems pretty early to be doing, so (luckily) it's easy to tell him apart from the other males around. I live about a mile from one of the largest lakes in the state, so I'm guessing he is somewhere on it, because he's not on any of the local ponds. I guess my question is: will he come back once he's done mating? How long will that be? I'm worried sick about him & miss him so much...I cry pretty much every day and dream he comes home every night.

    P.S. By the way, I'm finally in the process of buying a house where I can build a place for him to live with more ducks, so he won't be so lonely (as I'm sure he is, even with me around). Just in case anyone was going to advise me that he should be with other ducks...I know that, and if he comes back, I'll make sure he has a bunch of feathered friends. :)
     
  2. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Since Mallards can fly, the onky way to guarantee that he won't fly off again (if he returns) will be to clip his ings or keep him in a covered run. Whether he will return or not, I don't know. If he hasn't already, he may not. Since there are other ducks around, they may be able to show him how to forage enough that he is not hungry enough to return. If you know where he is, you can try going there and trying to get him to come to you. Sorry that he left and I hope he returns.
     
  3. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    FIRST: [​IMG]
    now as far as Louie coming home, I really can't say, once the hormones start working they have 1 thing on their mind. I hope he does come home and i know you miss he terribly, I too have raised a house drake but thankfully he has girls so he stays here. Mayber if Louie does decide to stay with the wild ones when you move you might think of getting a different breed or clipping a wing so he won't fly off. I wish you the best and hope Louie does come home.
     
  4. lovesgliders

    lovesgliders Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would head out to that lake with some of Louie's favorite treats and see if you can spot him and get him to come to you.

    One of my drakes got away from me last week (we normally keep them in a very large, covered aviary)... very scary! However he just didn't have the stamina to go far, we found him just a little ways up the road. You could almost hear him breathing hard, like an out-of-shape person. LOL He was easily herded home.

    Our pet ducks just don't have the breast muscles to fly for ages like their wild counterparts do, so I bet he didn't go far. Good luck. And I am so sorry...
     
  5. cymbaline

    cymbaline Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've been out there every single day, at least to the portion that is closest to where I live. This lake is massive, about 2700 acres, although the water is still at winter levels, so not that much right now, but you really still need a boat to cover it all, and the noise would probably just scare them away. Anyway, there are two geese (that someone dropped off), 4 male mallards, and 2-3 female mallards that hang out down there, so I thought for sure he'd join up with them, but he hasn't yet. There's also a very large pond in the direction he went that's even closer than the lake (like the next hill over from me), and I've checked there every day too...again, plenty of ducks (I even saw a wood duck pair!) and some canadian geese, but no Louie. :(
    When he initally flew off, I ran into the woods after him, figuring he would land there somewhere, because he never goes far. Went about halfway down and couldn't see him or hear him, so I drove down to the bottom of hill (I live at the top) where there's a little stream and worked my back up the hill some, still couldn't see him or hear him. I've gone back down there just about every day and called for him, with no results.
    He does get to exercise his wings some; obviously not as much as a wild duck, but he flies through my house at least a couple times a day (sometimes it's like he just makes laps around, lol), and then flies around the yard when we go out to play. I still don't imagine he went far, that's why I've been checking places near the house, but I guess if he got to the lake he could've swam pretty far out.
     
  6. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    I think that is what has always worried me the most about my ducks flying, is they would fly off and not be able to find their way home. So i clip their wing, they still fly but not very far. We have a river down below us and lots of preds so I want to keep them home. I hope louie will come home. i know you miss him.
     
  7. cymbaline

    cymbaline Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, so far, the general consensus for people who have a passing knowledge of ducks is that he'll come back home eventually; people who know/have ducks seem to be saying that he's gone. :( I was really hoping someone would have an inspiring story telling me how their duck came back, but I guess that's probably not gonna happen. I guess I thought since he was a spoiled little house-duck the outcome might be different than a duck who lived with other ducks outdoors. I am completely heartbroken. :`(

    Thank you all for your replies and well-wishes.
     
  8. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    I am so sorry but don't give up hope. It's just that after having drakes for many years it seems once the hormones start running they only have on thing on their minds. And Louie has probably met a very pretty female mallard. Think of it this way you raised him with love and gave him the best life could offer,and maybe just maybe he'll miss you and come back even if just for a visit. At least to let you know he is okay. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2012
  9. dukzzz

    dukzzz Out Of The Brooder

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    i heard a story on here of a women who bought a bunch of ducklings, a few being rouens that turned out to be mallards. they flew away to a local lake and came back 4 months later once breeding season was done. so theres still hope
     
  10. cymbaline

    cymbaline Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote: That's what I'm hoping for! So it does happen, huh? I really hope he gets all this out of his system and comes home. When is mating season generally over with?
     

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