The resiliency of ducks

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Carcajou, Jan 16, 2014.

  1. Carcajou

    Carcajou Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 3, 2012
    Delhi, New York
    I would like to share about my Buffy's going from what we thought was surely the end of her time to becoming one of our dominant females. Buffy was received in the mail with four other girls in May 2012. She was always lighter than than her siblings (after becoming fully feathered) and was just a "normal" duck until April 2013. One day she apparently damaged a wing trying to fly out of the coop in the morning. That didn't seem to slow her down much though her wing drooped some. Then, in mid-June, all of a sudden she could barely walk and her wing was badly drooping. I don't know if she had a stroke (as this is how she acted) or if whatever it was that afflicted her was a result of the wing damage. But she was damaged/sick enough that I could reach down and pick her up, something none of my flock ever let me get close enough to do.

    She went through a period of quarantine, first inside then staying in the fenced enclosure when the rest were let out (she did stay inside the coop with the others at night). During this time she received much TLC, electrolyte and Nutri-Drench applications, epsom salts baths, and special feeding mixes and sessions, and still laid an egg now and then though she did eventually stop. She eventually became more mobile and began to adamantly resist my picking her up to care for her. We reluctantly decided to let nature take its course and stopped the special treatment as we felt the trauma of being handled might be worse for her than just letting her mend on her own. At this point we began to let her out of the enclosure to forage with the others.

    Buffy's recovery was slow. She lost half her weight and at times only half-heartedly preened. She had a pronounced limp, her wing continued to droop, and she had trouble keeping up the the others, resting often and watching them. She never let us get too close and would move off if she thought we were violating her invisible buffer area. As fall approached Buffy entered the molt with the rest of the flock but remained half the size of the others. We thought surely she would not survive the winter.

    Sometime during the molt Buffy began to gain weight, her leg became stronger, and she regained a full compliment of beautiful feathers. She entered the particular could month of December 2013 with her limp almost gone, her wing only slightly drooping, and had become one of our two spokes ducks. She is often the lead female swimmer, first to the feeder, or in front of the flock when foraging until she needs to rest a bit, which hasn't been too often lately. Buffy's wing will always droop some, her slight limp will always be there, and I am sure she will have to stay behind and rest at times, but she is a survivor. She is an example for us that ducks don't seem to give up easily and must have strong survival instincts.

    Buffy is an inspiration to us and a reminder that the Lord is really in control. We put her life in His hands and He chose survival and renewed strength for her. She continues to hold a special place in our hearts, as do all our flock each in their individual way.

    Buffy in quarantine just after being transferred to the outside pen, July 27, 2013.

    The photos below were taken on January 14, 2014.

  2. HollyDuckFarmer

    HollyDuckFarmer Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 30, 2012
    LP Michigan
    Such a Nice Story :) Thanks for sharing.
  3. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners

    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    Yay, Buffy! [​IMG]

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