Q: A chicken-less duck

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by SovereignWolf, Feb 28, 2017.

  1. SovereignWolf

    SovereignWolf Just Hatched

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    Hello all, I'm new to this site, but I have been on it looking for info and reading the forums for a while now.

    Forgive me if this was ever covered, but, I was hoping for some advice.

    I got a duckling and a chick at the same time and raised them together as friends.

    They never bullied one another, in fact, the chicken was a little older than the duckling so I think maybe the duck saw her as a bit of a mom. But I can't be sure, all I know, is that the duck never wanted for any attention because she had the chicken.

    They ate, slept, and lived together with no issues at all.

    The chicken unexpectedly passed two days ago. Now my poor duck is alone.

    My duck is about 7 weeks old. I have her inside with me so she's not by herself outside. Should I get another chick? Maybe ducklings?

    It'll take a while for them to age up to her and be able to join her out side.

    I really am not sure what to do here, these are my first birds I've owned and this really threw a wrench in the gears.

    I'm really not looking for harsh criticism. I know there's mixed info regarding keeping these birds together, and maybe I was short-sighted to get just one duckling. I really don't know, but the chicken was my pet and I'm pretty heartbroken.


    When my chicken was taken away to be buried, my duck looked for her a long time, going back and forth from their coop to the pond. It was so sad, I couldn't bear to leave her outside so she's inside with me in a container, just to keep the mess to a minimum.

    She doesn't like it when I leave the room. I work from home, so, I have a unique situation where I can actually stick with her 24/7, but it is a bit trying and I'm unsure of how to resolve it.

    I feel like if I got another chicken it's sort of insulting to my human sensibilities, but maybe she'd enjoy having another chicken companion? Maybe another female duck like her? Maybe both? I honestly am unsure.


    Any helpful feedback is welcome. Thanks for taking the time to read this.


    [​IMG]
     
  2. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    @SovereignWolf Welcome to BYC

    Very sorry for your loss.

    If I was faced with this decision now after having chickens and ducks for some time I would choose duckling my reasoning is Ducks really like other ducks for getting into mud puddles and just being ducks together. Ducks and chickens can be best buds if raised together but I just believe they do better with their own species.

    If you can find a duckling[TSC usually has them this time of year] you can introduce gradually and see how your duck reacts to the new one. They may become fast friends since your duckling is grieving right now. Then again you may have to wait a while before they can be together 24/7 but under your supervision they can meet and get to know each other in the mean time.

    How old is your duckling now?

    Such a precious picture.
     
  3. SovereignWolf

    SovereignWolf Just Hatched

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    Thanks so much for the reply. Ally is 7 weeks old right now, I had just barely put her and Pepper outside when she passed away.

    Do you think keeping her outside alone until I get ducklings is a good idea? I don't want her to be lonely, but having her in the house is pretty trying as well. I was concerned she might get so depressed she'd stop eating or something.
     
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    You could try a unbreakable mirror for company for her stuffed animal may help too, She will be extremely lonely and may mourn too much if left outside alone. . If at all possible I'd keep her inside and try to find some friends fast. At 7 weeks she should be almost completely feathered in too. How are your temps outside now?
     
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  5. SovereignWolf

    SovereignWolf Just Hatched

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    Yeah she's nearly fully feathered. I live in AZ so it's not cold here in general. Right now we're in 75 high and 55 low. Itll be 80 high and 60 low by friday. I wasn't sure how much these birds grieved. I have been giving her more treats and monitoring her food closely, as I know there's alot of animals who will just stop eating if they're depressed enough. I think what might work best until I get more ducklings is just bringing her in for hours at a time. Do you guys think she'd be ok to sleep outside at night alone? She has a secure coop that I can see from my bedroom window. Thanks again for all your guys advice.
     
  6. Ashleymarie529

    Ashleymarie529 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    A couple months ago a hawk attacked my 3 silkie hens and killed one. One stayed in the coop crying out really loud and another one hid (at the time, we couldn't even find her she hid so well and we assumed she had been carried off previously and the hawk was back for more.) so we assumed we had only one chicken now and I think she thought she was alone too, being as we didn't find her sister for the entire rest of the day.

    So anyways, while Mary Jo thought she was the last chicken standing, she was absolutely miserable. I brought her inside all day with me and she just layed in my lap totally despondent and just slept and wouldn't eat. She had always been friendly but had never just sat with me without me holding her wings down.

    Later that day I was dreading putting her back in the coop. I went outside and there was Audrey Henbird crying at the back door!!! Mary Jo immediately ran to her and they've been best friends and my only chickens for months now.

    My point is, birds can definitely grieve and to me it was very unsettling to witness the sadness in her eyes. Also, I keep chickens and ducklings together in the same coop, but the ducklings are 4 in number, so when they get tired of the chickens being boring and pecking at everything, they can go be rambunctious ducklings with the others of their kind. But they will all sit together in a clump and be cute interspecies besties :D
    (Once the stupid pecking order is established!!)
     
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  7. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    I think you need to do what's best for you and Ally.
    She is so young I think she maybe terrified to be in the coop over night alone. They are flock animals and they do better in numbers so I wouldn't leave my 7 week old duckling or chick outside by them selves.
     
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  8. Ashleymarie529

    Ashleymarie529 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Agreed [​IMG] A baby is a baby no matter what species. Especially a sad baby... not a good plan. I do understand (from a poop standpoint) how trying it is to keep ducklings inside. But one ducky shouldn't be that bad. Poor baby. Take this time to bond with her and get her tame and you won't regret it later.
     
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  9. lomine

    lomine Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sorry for your loss. [​IMG]

    I agree that finding a duck friend for Ally would be the best approach. I would suggest trying to find two so that you don't find yourself in the same situation should you experience another loss. It is unfortunately inevitable.

    Perhaps you could try looking for slightly older ducklings on Craigslist. But even if you can only find younger ones I think Ally will be happier with company.
     
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  10. SovereignWolf

    SovereignWolf Just Hatched

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    Thank you everyone for your replies, condolences, and advice.

    Me and my boyfriend decided that yeah, it'd be best to go get some babies before the age gap is too large and Ally will have to be alone even longer.

    So here we go, I'm really a duck lady now. hoo boy.


    Until these guys get bigger we're going to keep ally inside at night, and some parts of the day.


    [​IMG]

    Edit: Oh and I did check CL but unfortunately, being such a small town couldn't find anything. Got these guys from TSC.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2017
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