Need some advise on a wild mallard hen

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Chickenaddict, May 13, 2010.

  1. Chickenaddict

    Chickenaddict Songster

    May 19, 2008
    East Bethel MN
    I tried posting in the emergency/disease/injury/cure section but no help there so I am gonna try it here.

    I was cleaning for a client of mine today and she had left me a note telling me to check out the duck on her deck. I looked out on the deck which is on the second story of the house and there was the mallard hen sitting in a flower pot on the deck right out in the open. I thought to myself hmmm this is odd for her to be out here like this where any air born predator could just snatch her right up. I kept an eye on her and about noon she left the nest. I didn't see her leave just noticed she had gone. I watched and waited for about 45 minutes. When glancing out there at the flower pot I hadn't seen her but then I looked around the deck and there she was just laid out smack dab in the middle of the deck like she was sitting on her eggs. I thought again her behavior was a bit strange. I sat and watched her try to get up and walk towards the flower pot nest, she was having a really hard time walking at all. I saw her left leg was injured like perhaps she had gotten clipped by a car. SHe had to fly up to the nest because she couldn't walk. I sat and pondered what I should do and decided at that point I had better leave things be and make a few phone calls when I got home.

    WHen I came home I called the wildlife rehab center about an hour away from my house. They told me to leave her be even tho she was injured OR take her in and they would try to fix her leg but if they couldn't she would have to be put down. They said I couldn't bring in the eggs (she has 10) They would just toss them. He told me to keep an eye on her and when the ducklings hatch I could bring in the whole crew, trouble is I am not there everyday and my client works everyday as well. Noone can really keep a close eye on her and I am guessing if I took her off the nest and moved her somewhere she would give up on the eggs. I fear that when the ducklings do hatch she won't be able to walk around with them and they will be easy pickins for predators. I have no clue as to what the laws are about these ducks but I sure don't want to get in any trouble. I hate to leave her out there, she is not sheltered at all and I am extremely worried about her leg. I have no desire to hatch out wild duck eggs but I'd hate to take that experience away from her. To mess with mother nature or to just let nature take it's course???? Please help

  2. gamebirdsonly

    gamebirdsonly Crowing

    Mar 5, 2007
    Well if it was me I would snag her and eggs [​IMG] But the right thing to do is let her be and let nature take it's course
    Last edited: May 13, 2010
  3. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

    Feb 24, 2009
    Strasburg Ohio
    I would follow the advice of the experts and let her be, BUT maybe you could help a bit by providing some easy access food and water for her? That would be a nice thing to do for mama!
  4. Chickenaddict

    Chickenaddict Songster

    May 19, 2008
    East Bethel MN
    Feed and water on the clients deck would be tricky as the feed would get wet, water wouldn't be a problem tho but I don't think they would allow a kiddie pool on their deck. I know ducks get injuries all the time from walking across roads and such and I have seen them recover on their own. I have a hard time with letting nature take it's course when I am able to step in and help a bit, not alot just give her shelter,food, and water until she is able to walk on her own. Again I don't know how long she has been like this but she seemed really stressed out from the injury and her left leg was off to the side just kind of hanging there from what I could see. I have a feeling it's a bad break.
  5. xke4

    xke4 Songster

    Feb 3, 2007
    Gosh. How sad. I found a center in Roseville and another in Crystal. Are either one of these the one you called? If so, maybe you would have better luck with the other? Wonder why they would trash the eggs?? A Mother in a Rubbermaid tote is going to take up as much room as a mother on a nest in a Rubbermaid tote.
  6. Chickenaddict

    Chickenaddict Songster

    May 19, 2008
    East Bethel MN
    Quote:I called the one in roseville, they said they wouldn't incubate the eggs as they have no incubator and wouldn't allow her to stay on them because they said she wouldn't. She is one determined mama and I don't want to take this experience away from her. I have dealt with the roseville rehab center in the past and they had been very helpful altho that was years ago when I found baby mice in my basement.... Pinkies...... I ended up hand feeding them kitten formula thru a syringe every 2 hours for a few days before I brought them in and they took them. This man I spoke to yesterday was less then helpful and just kept going on and on about how it was probably a deformity she was born with and how they would just end up putting her down because they don't save ducks with only one leg. This is NOT a deformity or she would have been dead a long time ago being she can't walk at all. I was really disappointed in them, I mean this is a wildlife rehab center, isn't that what they are there for? What a crock! I am guessing the one in crystal would tell me the same thing.

    Over the course of my life I am always running into situations like this where a wild animal needs help, I swear they find me! Sounds kind of crazy but it feels like they know I will go above and beyond to try and help them. Years ago I rescued a baby barn owl who had fallen out of the nest tooo early and landed in the middle of the street, In fear of the owl getting hit by a car I picked it up, placed it in a milk crate and took it home. I called the raptor center as soon as I got home and asked them to help. They came promptly and picked the owl up and we drove to the location where it had fallen out of the nest. They placed the baby back in the nest and parents gladly welcomed the little one back with open wings. That was one awesome experience! I expected the same with this mallard hen but I guess there are such an overabundant amount of them here they just don't give a rats behind like I do
  7. classroomducks

    classroomducks Songster

    Sep 19, 2009
    Fort Worth, Tx
    I know how you feel. My cat, just over a year old, decided to take a baby bird out of its nest and bring it in chirping to me...poor thing. Everyone told me its just the way it is...just put it back outside or throw it in the river....gah...i couldnt do out my incubator and put it in there with a towel to keep it warm...but i think it asperated in one of the feedings and it died in about 24 hours...but man i sure tried. I feel for you. I dont suppose mama will let you near her and you could popsicle stick her leg or do i feel for you...

  8. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    My guess is that on a second floor deck, all is safe until the ducklings hatch. Is the hen mobile at all? If so and if there is a nearby body of water, I would carry the hatchlings there. She will most likely follow. I would then release the ducklings in the water and let mom take over. If you attempt to move her and the eggs, she will not incubate them. She is after all a wild animal. If she is somewhat mobile on land, she will be far more mobile in the water.
  9. Chickenaddict

    Chickenaddict Songster

    May 19, 2008
    East Bethel MN
    Sourland- She is at a clients house 30 minutes away from me so I have no daily access to her nor do I know how long those ducklings have been incubating under her all I know is she had been hanging around their deck for 2 weeks or so and had a total of 10 eggs under her which indicates to me that she just started sitting on them. SHe can't walk at all she flies a bit then takes a long break before she gets up the strength to fly a few more feet. There is a pond near by, about 4 houses down from my clients house. Below the deck is crushed landscaping rock and concrete. It would be a pretty harsh fall for the ducklings after they hatch and head towards the water. I go back there in 2 weeks. I still haven't heard from the client as to what she wants me to do either so my hands are still tied and she is still suffering and out in the open. Guess I am in for yet another sleepless night....
  10. chicks4kids

    chicks4kids Songster

    Apr 22, 2009
    Northern Indiana
    If you're not due back in 2 weeks, she may hatch out those babies by then. I would call your employer in a couple of days, ask her if she's had enough time to make her decision, and go get the duck. She could have been laying those eggs for well, 10 days, and nobody noticed until there was a duck sitting in the pot [​IMG] [​IMG] It's worth a shot, especially if you are in the area sometime before the 2 weeks and can go get her.....

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