Pinioning?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Diamond88, May 27, 2012.

  1. Diamond88

    Diamond88 Songster

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    What are people's opinions on pinioning? I just hatched my first duck today and (hopefully) have two more on the way. I'm planning on taking them to an avian vet in the next week or two, just for a check-up and to have them sexed. I'm wondering if I should also have them pinioned as well. It's certainly not something I would ever attempt myself because I'd be terrified of causing pain and damage, but I assume a professional could do it very well.

    Initially I was planning on keeping these ducks (call ducks) mainly free range in a large yard on a lake, in which case their wings would be left intact. But that housing situation didn't work out, and it now looks like we'll be moving to the city, probably Los Angeles. Of course I'll keep the ducks in a secure and predator-proof pen, but if they were to get loose and fly away in such a big city, I'm pretty sure they'd never make it back.

    By no means do I want to cause pain to my little babies, but it's important to me to be confident that they're unable to fly. Should I have the vet pinion them, or is pinioning frowned upon?
     
  2. duckking

    duckking Songster

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    Hate the idea myself.

    Just clip their wings after each molt. You can even clip just one wing. Not that much of a hassle and doesn't cause permanent damage to them, or pain.
     
  3. nickie

    nickie Songster

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    Do calls actually fly? I know they are small and known to be a bit on the vocal side... I personally think pinioning is cruel and unusual punishment, but that's just me.
     
  4. Nsampsel

    Nsampsel Songster

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    I myself have my birds in town & I just keep a wing clipped on each bird. Mallards & Calls especially, and any of my chickens who aren't yet too fat to fly.
     
  5. Kevin565

    Kevin565 Crowing

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    Last edited: May 27, 2012
  6. Diamond88

    Diamond88 Songster

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    Thank you for the opinions! I'm an animal lover and very much against animal cruelty. I guess I'm trying to figure out if I feel that pinioning is cruel or not. From the photos in that thread, Kevin, it certainly doesn't seem too terrible. (Actually, it's making me think of my recent cartilage piercing, which stung but was no big deal.) Then again, for all we know as humans, it could be excruciating. How do birds react to having it done?

    I'm a very, very paranoid person, so the thought of even clipping my birds' wings occasionally is really intimidating. That's why I started doing research on pinioning. As I mentioned, I'll mainly keep the ducks penned, but I just don't want to take any risks with them possibly flying away.

    Are there any adverse effects of pinioning? Can it cause damage, other than stopping flight?

    Thanks for weighing in!
     
  7. nickie

    nickie Songster

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    As with any surgical procedure that involves cutting of the skin I am sure there is a risk of possible infection, how high of a risk of that is anyone's guess. That's just in any paperwork from any doctor or vets office when you sign your informed consent form. I am not trying to be the high and mighty person pointing fingers and shouting cruelty. If you are worried about complications and side effects you should probably take that up with your vet.

    Wing clipping really isn't that difficult to do, and if done right you can't tell its done unless the wings are extended. I have 12 turkeys clipped both sides and 3 chickens clipped on one side... Once you do it the first time you shrug your shoulders and wonder what you were worried about.
     
  8. Nsampsel

    Nsampsel Songster

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    X2...My 8 yr old helps hold my birds while I clip. On the smaller or more calm ones I can even do it by myself.
     
  9. Diamond88

    Diamond88 Songster

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    This is all great info! I appreciate the feedback. I think I'll talk it over with the vet. Basically, I guess I'm just trying to determine whether it's morally right or wrong. Maybe it's something that's no fun but still for the best--kind of like when parents have to force their children to get shots even though the kids are crying. A short period of pain in exchange for a lifetime of safety. Or, maybe it's much worse than that, and I should just clip their wings after each moult instead. I'll continue to do research and talk to the vet about the pain, anesthesia options, etc. Thanks!
     
  10. duckking

    duckking Songster

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    If you could give your kids a vaccine as needed, as opposed to cutting their arms off......???
     

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