Rescued duckling off the highway in NJ

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by equine623, Jun 12, 2010.

  1. equine623

    equine623 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    First let me say that I'm the biggest proponent of leaving nature alone, and my best friend is a wildlife rehabber but we both have little experience with ducks. Anyway, while driving along Rt. 80 in NJ I spied 4 little heads in the grass of the center median. Then I saw 4 waddling bodies heading towards the fast lane. By the time I got off at the next exit, did a u turn, then did another u turn and pulled off near them two had already been run over. Sadly I was only able to save one of the two remaining ones [​IMG] My 5 year old daughter is quite upset at seeing the last one being hit.

    But I digress. I have one pretty small what I believe to be wood duckling (based on coloring and eye striping) that is calling for his/her family and most unhappy with being here. I plan to take him to a gal who does waterfowl rehab tomorrow, couldn't get there today it was too late. I have him/her in a box with a light for heat, water (not real deep) and offered chopped lettuce and some millet seed for lack of any proper duck food.

    Does anyone have any suggestions of anything else I can/should do to make him more calm and happy? I can't imagine the stress of being along a major highway with cars going past at literally 80 mph when you're only a few inches tall! I did syringe feed a small amount of water just to make sure he stays hydrated, which is more important than food at this point.

    Thanks in advance. As I said, I am pretty strongly opposed to removing any animal from the wild, but being smashed by a car seemed like a pretty unfair ending.
     
  2. JosieR

    JosieR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'm fairly new to ducks myself but everyone on here always suggests a mirror and/or a stuffed toy to snuggle for lone ducks.

    Good luck [​IMG]
     
  3. chickenlisa

    chickenlisa Invincible Summer

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    oh How sad for that little baby! I think it'll be ok overnight with what you're doing. Maybe put a fluffy beanie baby or other stuffed animal in there with it so it'll feel like there's someone to cuddle with. I've heard they eat live meal worms too...but who has those just sitting around?!?
    Hoping it makes it overnight and is ok tomorrow when you bring it to the waterfowl expert. I still want to have Wood Ducks someday...(I'm less than an hour south of Rt 80 in NJ btw.)
     
  4. equine623

    equine623 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh yeah sorry should have added I did put in a small stuffed toy too. Thanks for responding. I wish I could have gotten him to the duck rehabber tonight instead of tomorrow, my best friend and I are way more knowledgeable about mammals and songbirds and raptors!
     
  5. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

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    Sounds like you are headed in the right direction. [​IMG]

    Do you have an indication of the temperature in the box? Too much heat can be a problem, too. Good to keep water available - see if you can gauge whether there is enough in there for overnight. My domestic ducklings could really guzzle the water quickly, and going without is no good.

    You might consider soaking some dry cat kibble and putting a few pieces in for food - ducklings need a fair amount of protein, and I don't know how much is in millet.
     
  6. veronicasmom

    veronicasmom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Good luck, hope the little one is does ok.
    I hate Rt 80! That is one obnoxious road.
     
  7. equine623

    equine623 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for the replies everyone. It is pretty warm and humid in the house so I opted to turn the light off and fully cover the top of the box to try to limit the stress, he/she was chirping and trying to jump out but seems to have settled down now. There is plenty of water in there, the dish is shallow enough to prevent drowning but fairly big around. My friend looked up in some of her books about rehabbing and got a recipe for a mash to make so I'll try that in the morning and see if it will eat. Part of the mash includes hard boiled egg yolk and I have plenty of fresh eggs [​IMG]

    Yeah, rt 80 is definitely obnoxious!!
     
  8. xke4

    xke4 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I just wanted to let you know that they are extremely difficult to raise and that if it should happen to pass away in the night, it will not be your fault in any way. Good for you rescuing this little guy. It is quite typical for them to jump, jump, and jump for long periods of time accompanied by lots of peeping. Even when they have a brooder full of littermates. It is not because they are alone. It is just what they do. Sadly, this jumping and excessive peeping wears away at their energy and they do not settle well enough to eat/drink.
     
  9. equine623

    equine623 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well he/she made it through the night [​IMG] and is peeping and jumping [​IMG]. Going to try and get him/her to eat.
     
  10. JosieR

    JosieR Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh so glad to hear it made it though! Please keep us updated [​IMG] I'm a sucker for the underdog (or underduck, I suppose!)
     

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