Warning about ducks and wire bottoms...

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Chickerdoodle13, Jun 24, 2008.

  1. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    I was on vacation last week and a friend was taking care of my animals for me. Luckily this happened the day I came home or I would have had one dead ducky!

    I usually keep my ducklings on regular shavings for a couple of weeks and then move them into a brooder with very small wire holes on the bottom to keep them out of the mucky shavings they create. I have never had a problem before and generally the wire squares are much smaller than the feet of the ducks. It's easier to clean and the ducks like the fact that they can make as much of a mess as they want without sitting in it.

    Anyways, somehow the one duckling jammed his elbow (Ankle part of the leg) through one of the very small holes in the wire. I have NO IDEA how this happened, as the leg was completely twisted and the elbow could not fit easily through the wire. The leg was so swollen I had to cut the cage just to get him out! I expected the worst, but to my surprise, he is completely fine despite his ordeal!

    I just wanted to warn people about keeping any type of birds on wire! I was lucky, but now I am even more careful. I've never had a problem before, but the whole situation could have been much worse!
  2. DuckLady

    DuckLady Administrator

    Jan 11, 2007
    NE Washington State
    Great warning, thanks!

    Wire is also know to facilitate bumblefoot in webfeeted birds.

    If you ever had a chronically bumbled duck you would never use wire.

    I am glad your baby is ok.
  3. I had my call ducks and ducklings on wire bottmed breeding cages. They wireing is soo tiny, that they could never ever get anything stuck.

    I am going on vacation soon, so I moved all my ducks, ducklings, and mandarin trio into a 24'x12' dog kennel. They were so happy. They were flying and everything. Then all I hear is a clickling like noise, and all the ducks had there beaks in the mud, playing around. It was so cute.

    ETA: I do have 2 boards in each cage. That are around 1ft by 1.5ft. So that they can stand on the board if they dont like the wire. I rinse it out every day. They are only in the breeding pens during the spring.
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008
  4. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    Yeah, I keep most of my ducks on wire too, especially the calls. As long as I keep the nails clipped nice and short, I never have a problem. This just shocked me to no end! I just cannot imagine how the little guy jammed his elbow through the wire. It is not like he just slipped and fell though! Luckily my dad found him and we just clipped the wire around the elbow.

    I think I will still use the wire for some of the ducks, but I'm just going to be extra careful! I do have some little call ducklings that hatched unexpectedly under their mom in a rabbit hutch. I don't want their little feet falling through the wire, so I will have to figure something out!

    Edit: LOL, I just read your edit and the board is a good idea! I wonder if I could just temporarily stick a piece of flat wood in there to cover the wire bottom until they get older.
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008
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    Last edited: Jun 24, 2008
  6. Good thing that your father noticed the duckling.

    I think that putting a board in wood be good. Just make sure to rinse it off everyday. Each morning when I went out, the board was covered with poop and food. lol..very messy.
  7. robinaggie

    robinaggie Flew the Coop

    May 25, 2008
    This is how I acquired a goose last Saturday. The feed store got the goslings on Thursday, and when I went to get supplies on Saturday I looked in the goose pen. Four babies had their feet stuck through the wire and couldn't get out. The goslings were flipped over on their backs with their legs all twisted around. I was able to help three of them, but one looked like it had been trapped since Thursday. It was almost dead, so I brought it home. It's in rehab now, but I reported the feed store for animal neglect, since nobody there seemed to care. The wire mesh was small - but so were the babies flexible feet.
  8. Chickndaddy

    Chickndaddy Songster

    Jul 26, 2007
    East Texas
    Oh I hate stories like that. Similar story but a different bird. I went to visit my mother for the weekend and left the birds in the incompetent hands of my father who hates the birds. (This is the man who unplugged the heat lamp on my mallard babies in the garage right around Christmas while I was gone (again with my mother) because they were peeping and he didn't want to hear them. [​IMG] When I got home there was one little baby huddled up with the dead ones trying to keep warm. :thun They also had no water.) Anyways a few of my baby turkey got their "knees" stuck in the wire and got slipped tendon. That was a horrible ordeal. Thankfully after splinting I was able to correct all the poults' legs except for one. And he was Gimpy from then on.

    So word of warning. Be very careful with babies on wire.
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2008
  9. PearlD

    PearlD Songster

    Apr 15, 2007
    Northwest Alabama
    Well, since we are confessing to wire mishaps.....I had a batch of turkeys hatching a couple of weeks ago, and one hatched and impaled itself RIGHT IN the naval opening with the jagged wire along the edges.[​IMG] I thought for sure it would die from infection in the coming days, but it has been fine for almost 2 weeks!!!
    Needless to day, I stockpiled on shelf liner when I went to the Dollar Tree.

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