Sick ducks? Help! Newbie!

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by PrayingMantis, Nov 17, 2013.

  1. PrayingMantis

    PrayingMantis Out Of The Brooder

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    We have 2 welsh harlequins with liquid diarrhea and both limping on left leg. Eating drinking well. Wants to be active but as day goes on limp gets worse. 6 months old, laying an egg daily, but diarrhea going on for about a month. No exposure to toxins or other farm animals, bedding changed daily (shavings) water/food bowls cleaned daily. Feed in airtight container and getting layer feed. Freely roaming on an acre of grass. Total 4 laying ducks, and 4 ducklings 2 months old. Questionable if 2 khaki Campbell's consistently have diarrhea but ducklings normal play dough poop and house apart from laying ducks. Very worried they are sick and since we are new at this I feel horrible that I just don't know! We are using a separate well that is untreated and did test positive for chloroform but told probably a contaminant at end of faucet ok to use for ducks. Is this true? Help! :(
     
  2. Chicken Charmer

    Chicken Charmer New Egg

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    I just read somewhere that if a duck is limping or has bad legs it could be a sign of botulism or a calcium deficiency. If it is Botulism and left untreated it could kill them! It said on that web site to try to get them to a bird vet ASAP! I know they don't have bird vets in my area. I hope this helps you a little bit?
     
  3. PrayingMantis

    PrayingMantis Out Of The Brooder

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    We live in VA and it's cold with temps no higher than 60 for the past several weeks. Is botulism possible? Diarrhea started a month ago and limping started 3 days ago for one duck and 1 day ago with the other duck. Both limping on left leg. One khaki now has diarrhea as of today. All are eating more and drinking more. Possibly parasite? Any help greatly appreciated!
     
  4. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    I can't imagine coliform being good for man or animal, and wondering if this is the problem, can you stop using the water with this in it and see if you notice any difference in a couple days, also get a good probiotic with electrolytes included in it and start adding it to their water, If it was botulism they would most likely be dead by now, unless it again is in the water and it's minute amounts but the way ducks drink water. The chloroform maybe affecting the calcium and causing leg weakness[all just a guess] but I am going to do a bit of research now and see what I can come up with. which is it coliform or chloroform and are they the same?
     
  5. PrayingMantis

    PrayingMantis Out Of The Brooder

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    Oh yes! I did stop using the contaminated well with coliform bacteria for over a week now. Diarrhea not improving. Gave vitamins in water daily along side water from our home well that is safe. Stopped filling the 50gallon pool and now just using kiddie pool and only letting them hang out to clean in the morning then dumping it out. Past couple of days filled the pool with warm water and the two limping ducks seem to hang out longer in it. I then decided today when they were just standing on one leg, not sleeping, but just standing, that it was time to confine them to rest. I let them out for about 30 min to eat before coping up for the night. What I have noticed is that they all seem more hungry and thirsty and thinking this is a parasite. There just isn't any other symptoms I can see. They are laying an egg a day still so that can't be it right? Parasite? Bacterial? Our one khaki has off and on fluffing her feathers and walking around like she's a turkey. Is this pain? She's the only one doing this but she is also our crazy one that can be mean. No aggression from her though. I give probiotic in food once a week, poop thickens for a day or less and back to diarrhea. Gave peas, ground up oats, barley, flax seed as well. No real improvements. Use to give them crushed up nearly powdered egg shell (their eggs) to help with increase calcium. Did this make them sick? They won't eat the bigger pieces of the oyster shell, it needs to be crushed smaller and I can't find it this way anywhere. So I scoop out a container full and empty the big pieces and add the smaller and powder at the bottom to their food in the morning. I would think nutritionally they are good right?
     
  6. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    Worm them and see if it helps, sounds like your doing everything right. I'd diff keep the 2 that have them limp more confined to see it it helps have you looked at the bottom of the left foot? checking for bumble? My Scovys have watery poop most of the time so I never think much about it since they drink so much water. and mine are eating a lot too especially since there isn't much foraging going on. I'm not sure what to say about your khaki almost sounds like how a broody duck acts and looks. I don't think powdered egg shell would hurt them mine get it all the time. I would put their oyster shell in a separate bowl from their feed. Have you ever given them Brewers yeast or niacin? and what feed are they eating? besides the oats etc you said here.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2013
  7. PrayingMantis

    PrayingMantis Out Of The Brooder

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    Yep, I've looked their feet over and their legs. Aside from looking slightly dry the feet and legs seem fine. No cuts, no swelling, no temp difference. I even massaged the leg all the way around to the spine and they were fine with it. As far as the dryness on the leg and feet, I don't know if they can be a sign of dehydration or illness as I don't know others with ducks to compare but certainly no cracks that I can see. Are welsh harlequins probe to leg issues? Could their poo be normal? It doesn't seem normal. I believe normal poop should be a custard, play dough texture, formed and the occasional variance is normal but not a constant state of diarrhea. Vent area looks fine but compared to what I ask myself! Eyes look good, feathers look good, maybe some dandruff? The food they get is Purina layena layer feed and it was mixed with the Purina layer with the omega fats. Use to feed twice a day now 3 times a day for a total of 32-36oz a day for 4 ducks. The ducklings get the dumor starter crumble feed. The layers get a handful of a mix of the oats, barley, flax seed once a day. Occasional thawed frozen corn tossed with olive oil. Peas occasionally. They turn down pretty much everything else except chopped peeled fresh apples as I don't want to expose them to all the chemicals used on them. Where do I find brewers yeast? The vitamin pack I add to their water daily which has niacin in it. Do they need more? Can never tell how much they really are drinking. They have a bucket of the vitamin water and a bowl of fresh water. I change the fresh water several times a day.
    How do I deworm them? What do I use? If it's bacterial such as something from the well water, will they need to be seen by a vet and medicated or will removing the water and letting them work through it? We plan on getting the water tested further to fully know what's in the water and correct it. Our 5 year old daughter has been having intermittent abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea for over a month as well. She sucks her thumb so could she have picked up their "ick" we wonder. We just had her at the doc and sent off stool testing. She is good about washing her hands but I've been running in and out of the house tending to the ducks that who knows! The door handles, towels they dry their hands on, and all the other not so obvious stuff. I haven't fallen ill though. We all eat the eggs but I got rid of the past 8-10 days worth of eggs just to be cautious. We think it's more likely a different bug she get from school but the pediatrician is covering all areas.
     
  8. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    First off I haven't ever heard of WH having leg issues other than a niacin dif when babies, but I don't hang out of the WGH thread since I don't have any so you may want to check in with the folks that do keep them, and not sure if this is a niacin issue especially if they are getting it in their vitamin just wonder if it might be worth a shot to add some extra in the form of BY on top of their feed for about a week to see if it makes any difference. BY can be found at co ops and in Natural food stores or on line I know Amazon sells it. Or plain niacin from Walmart mixed in water but it has to be plain. Sounds like they are getting an extra good feed program, Could just be the water they were drinking and it needs time to clear their systems. I worm with Verm-X it's an all natural wormer but before I started using it I used Epernix Pour on because there is no egg withdrawl when using it. it is used like front line for dogs on base of the neck on the skin. I just got tired of having to do my flock of 38 by hand and wanted to go with a more natural approach so I bought the Verm-X. To answer your question about poop, My ducks/geese have more watery poop than solid, It is occasionally soft but mostly just watery.

    I think that's is good idea to have your daughter tested since kids are more susceptible to things but hopefully it's not from the ducks. Ducks are very hardy critters and as long as kept in a fairly clean environment and fed good food very seldom have health issues. I say fairly clean because it's extremely hard to keep their area completely clean. as far as taking them to a vet why not take a stool specimen to your vet that way you'll know if your dealing with a parasite. especially the 2 having the leg problem take in theirs. They could do blood work also, just up to you.
     
  9. PrayingMantis

    PrayingMantis Out Of The Brooder

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    Thank you for being so helpful! We are new to owning ducks and really thought we researched all there is but there just isn't enough info out there on specifics. Will try the brewers yeast and would like to know where I can locate the dewormer Verm-x. My child has been home from school for a week and feeling much better, we suspect it's a different issue altogether coming from the school. Today we will keep our sweet ducks contained in a smaller area to see if there is improvement. And contact the vet for pricing. Thank you and will keep posting. :)
     
  10. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

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    https://www.verm-xusa.com/poultry/poultry-pellets.html I went back and forth for about a year on buying this because it's not cheap, but I feel so much better knowing I am caring for my flock the same why I care for my family after all we are eating their eggs. I hope you can get some peace of mind about your ducks and what ever is going on passes soon. Usually niacin diff shows up in young duckling especially those who are fed chick starter being it's formulated for chicks it just doesn't have the amount of niacin ducklings need. So many of us who can't get water fowl feed or feed a flock consisting of chickens have to supplement for the niacin they don't get. I even use Brewers yeast in my feed with my adults. Maybe a few days of rest will help get the 2 back on track I hope so and please keep updating. Glad to hear the human child is feeling better too. [​IMG]
     

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