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Normal winter behavior?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by EmAbTo48, Dec 6, 2011.

  1. EmAbTo48

    EmAbTo48 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 9, 2011
    Northern Wisconsin
    All my ducks/drakes appear wet like, they hate coming out of their pen and when they do to go to the pool area they will stop and put there feet in their body every couple of feet. This normal?
     
  2. m.kitchengirl

    m.kitchengirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hmmm.

    This is what Storey's guide says:

    Chronically Wet Feathers
    Normally, ducks in good feather condition are able to stay relatively dry even in prolonged periods of wet weather. Birds with chronic wet feathers look waterlogged during wet weather or after bathing. Causes. There are a variety of causes, including a plugged or infected oil gland; heavy infestations of mites (some kinds are difficult to see); feathers covered with fuel, sprays, or other foreign substances; and living in sloppy pens. Treatment. If the oil gland is infected or plugged, it should be massaged gently several times daily with a warm compress, and the bird should be given an oral antibiotic as prescribed by your veterinarian. For mites an appropriate insecticide should be applied. In difficult cases some people have reported success with 1 percent injectable ivermectin for cattle and swine (not ivermectin plus clorsulon). Squirt or drip 0.10 cc per 4 pounds (1.75 kg) of bird down the patientÂ’s throat. (Because the active ingredient of this systemic vermicide is not registered for use in birds, ivermectin should be used only under the supervision of a veterinarian.) Birds should be treated again for mites in 4 weeks. Due to damaged feathers, ducks sometimes have to molt old feathers and grow a new set before their feathers shed water normally again. Prevention. Keep ducks in a clean environment. Do not allow them to bathe in water that is contaminated with foreign substances, and treat them for external parasites as needed.

    Holderread, Dave (2011-01-19). Storey's Guide to Raising Ducks, 2nd Edition (Kindle Locations 4892-4904). Storey Publishing, LLC. Kindle Edition.

    I would say to check these things to start. I also wish you good luck, and hope more folks chime in on this one. I'm no pro, I just run to my Storey's at the first sign of a problem. Then I come here.
    [​IMG]
    Hope everyone is dry looking & cozy today.
     
  3. EmAbTo48

    EmAbTo48 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks... They look terrible in the morning when let out, but once are able to bath they look fine.... I have not found any mites but I will look harder.


    We have A TON of snow right now last night was 5 degrees out. They seem to hate walking to far in the snow (There kiddie pool is by the house about 20 feet from there pen since I need the hose from the house) They are used to having a pond all year round, but for some reason this year our pond isn't staying open even with our tank heater in it. I can't recall them looking wet like or them acting cold like they are my drake will actually shiver? I am thinking I may need to use the heat lamp and really look hard for mites on them.

    Can mites live in this type of weather though?
     
  4. Fowel Frenzy

    Fowel Frenzy Out Of The Brooder

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    My 3 runner ducks were looking a bit shabby this past weekend after a prolonged very cold (Zero) stretch. They always had plenty of water for drinking and a large enough bucket to bathe their head but not enough to "get in" and swim. I't is not practical for me to fill the kiddie pool in sub zero temps so I did the next best thing.

    On Sunday I filled the bathtub and sent them for a good swim. There was much splashing, dunking and all around bathtub fun. I noticed that their outer feathers seemed to get wet, soggy, looking even but the downey underneath was peeling the water away. Anyway, after the bath they seemed to dry nicely and most of the shabby look was gone. The next day their outter feathers looked to be in much better shape, smoothe and sleek so I am guessing that the natural oils were collecting too much dust etc and all they needed was a good soaking.
     
  5. m.kitchengirl

    m.kitchengirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I am not sure if mites can live when it is cold but I know how much warmer my duck house is than the outside, so it may be warm enough in there. I could just be something with their oil gland being dirty (I think that is more likely).
    I built my duck house with an enclosed run that has space for their pool, but in this weather I don't fill it as much. I fill it on days when I will be at work, and empty it when I get home. I fill it about every 3 days instead of every day.
    My ducks are definitely not as purty as they were in summer when I had 2 pools going all the time.

    I'm a baker at a restaurant & we have these plastic "fish tubs" that our fish monger delivers our fish in. I fill one of the big ones (they are about the size of a large roasting pan, and about as deep as a deep bureau drawer) daily with warm water (it is easy to do, they aren't that big & have a lid) and bring that out to them. They all try to squeeze in at the same time (and are somewhat successful) but on days when they aren't getting their pool filled, this is a good option.
    I am SURE that if you have a local fish merchant, know your grocery store/ favorite restaurant staff well, they would GIVE you some of these fish tubs. I have worked all over the country & they are ubiquitous with restaurants, and we can't give them back to the fish guy. We have stacks of thousands, and more come in all the time. Ask around, you may be able to locate some. I love them for lots of things, and every time I ask my boss if I can take some she yells, "PLEASE!". (This has been true at EVERY restaurant I have ever worked at, for 18 years.)

    I hope that your ducks are doing better. I am surprised how few responses you are getting. Maybe now you'll get more.
    I had to hunt for this post just to find out what was going on. I have - for some reason - had your ducks on my mind for the last few days. [​IMG]
     
  6. EmAbTo48

    EmAbTo48 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 9, 2011
    Northern Wisconsin
    m.kitchengirl :

    I am not sure if mites can live when it is cold but I know how much warmer my duck house is than the outside, so it may be warm enough in there. I could just be something with their oil gland being dirty (I think that is more likely).
    I built my duck house with an enclosed run that has space for their pool, but in this weather I don't fill it as much. I fill it on days when I will be at work, and empty it when I get home. I fill it about every 3 days instead of every day.
    My ducks are definitely not as purty as they were in summer when I had 2 pools going all the time.

    I'm a baker at a restaurant & we have these plastic "fish tubs" that our fish monger delivers our fish in. I fill one of the big ones (they are about the size of a large roasting pan, and about as deep as a deep bureau drawer) daily with warm water (it is easy to do, they aren't that big & have a lid) and bring that out to them. They all try to squeeze in at the same time (and are somewhat successful) but on days when they aren't getting their pool filled, this is a good option.
    I am SURE that if you have a local fish merchant, know your grocery store/ favorite restaurant staff well, they would GIVE you some of these fish tubs. I have worked all over the country & they are ubiquitous with restaurants, and we can't give them back to the fish guy. We have stacks of thousands, and more come in all the time. Ask around, you may be able to locate some. I love them for lots of things, and every time I ask my boss if I can take some she yells, "PLEASE!". (This has been true at EVERY restaurant I have ever worked at, for 18 years.)

    I hope that your ducks are doing better. I am surprised how few responses you are getting. Maybe now you'll get more.
    I had to hunt for this post just to find out what was going on. I have - for some reason - had your ducks on my mind for the last few days. [​IMG]

    Thanks so much! I really appreciate it! They actually are doing 100% better! Me and the Hubby went out that night and started going over each duck to see if we saw any mites/ or bug bites and thankfully nothing came up!

    They still get a full pool everyday! But as the weather got colder I assume they weren't wanting to walk up the path about 20 feet from their shelter to use it! I was filling it every morning before work and just left assuming they would use it like they always do! But I think they must have not! I chased them up to the pool the one day because they just looked terrible and that's when I saw them looking "water logged"... Now that I have been making them use the pool at least every other day they are fine! So I am sure your right about the Oil gland being plugged!

    As much as they hate walking the 20 feet to the pool at times (today its 10 degrees out) I have been making them and they look much much better! [​IMG]
     
  7. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Could you lay down straw on the path? Or sawdust?
     
  8. m.kitchengirl

    m.kitchengirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Could you lay down straw on the path? Or sawdust?

    That is what I do, in an area around the yard. Once they get out there they usually will venture further than the straw, but they stay pretty close to those paths.

    Glad your ducks are doing better. It is so scary when they seem off.​
     
  9. toadbriar

    toadbriar Chillin' With My Peeps

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  10. azhenhouse

    azhenhouse Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We had a snow storm dump two feet of snow here last week and the ducks weren't too excited to be out in it. The poor things would walk a few inches then sit on their feet. Then, walk a few more steps and sit. I finally put down straw for them, and that really helped. They stay pretty close to the area with the straw. We are expecting a lot more snow next week, which is much needed in this part of Arizona. However, with so much snow it has doubled the amount of time it takes me to do my chores. [​IMG] A problem I am having is keeping their water bowls from freezing. It has been a challenge.
     

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