What's going on with my duck?

Jess427

Hatching
May 5, 2015
5
0
7
Ducky medical concerns...

So, I'm new here. Basically. I did have an account but it's been so long that I forgot my login info altogether. Here's the issue:
I have two Pekins... One drake and one hen. I had one hen pass away last summer and the vet said it was a "neurological issue". We got a new hen later that month because my drake seemed like he might be grieving at a level that could be unhealthy for him. That was in July, and this hen seems to be in the beginning stages of what my first hen died of. I've read that over-mating can cause serious issues, and after reading up on it I noticed that she showed some of the signs, like patches under her wings and a thin spot on the back of her head (those feathers are growing back little by little). So, to prevent her getting worse, I separated them in the pen. I let them out to forage one at at time, and they're only out together if I'm outside to make sure my drake doesn't try to mate with her. One of the things I'm concerned about: is it harmful to the drake if I don't let him mate..? Am I doing the right thing there? Also, she's having some other symptoms that are similar to the ones my first hen had and I can't explain them. A couple of days ago, I was herding them into the pen, and she seemed wobbly on her feet. Then, she started using her wings to walk. I have heard that this can be a sign of egg binding, but my first hen did this too, and an x-ray proved that she didn't have an egg stuck. Something tells me it'd be the same for this hen. Also, her third eyelid is coming out a lot more than it should, which I've heard can happen with weight loss, and she is looking a little thin. Her wings twitch sometimes, and it seems to be when she gets wet or during/after preening. She sneezes multiple times in a row and occasionally coughs. I know that could mean some kind of respiratory thing, but my drake shares the pen with her and there's absolutely NOTHING wrong with him. He's big, healthy, and happy. So another thing I thought of: is he a carrier of something and he's transmitting it to the girls while it isn't affecting him? I know this is a long post, but I'm really looking for answers and I can't tell you how terrible I would feel if I lost another duck to the same illness when there's something I could be doing to help. Thanks in advance to anyone who can offer some ideas!
 
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Amiga

Overrun with Runners
Jan 3, 2010
23,213
2,814
551
Southern New England
Here is my first guess - she may have developed an infection either from some tears in the tissue of her reproductive system from over-mating, which has led to a systemic infection.

I would get a vet's help if possible, and get her on antibiotics.
 

Jess427

Hatching
May 5, 2015
5
0
7
I didn't think of that. Thank you. I was already planning on contacting my vet. My first hen was put on antibiotics and they didn't seem to help... Does that just mean it might've been too late?
 

Jess427

Hatching
May 5, 2015
5
0
7
This evening I discovered a second problem. There have been mallards hanging around for a couple of days now, and this time it was one male. He was in the neighbor's yard "lurking" and when I wasn't paying attention he flew over the fence and headed straight for my ducks. He tried to mate with my hen, and when my drake defended her, the mallard tried to pick a fight. I had no idea that wild mallards could be so bold. I had to chase him out of the yard just to get him to stop attacking my ducks, and even then he continued the "lurking". He even flew over the fence and tried to do it again. I know he's probably just doing what ducks do, but I do not appreciate it. As of now, I really want to find a way to keep these mallards AWAY from my ducks, especially when my hen is already having health problems related to over-mating. Any suggestions?
 

Amiga

Overrun with Runners
Jan 3, 2010
23,213
2,814
551
Southern New England
Some netting over the top. I don't mean to sound too simple. But I found this netting - it was labeled as a type of deer fence, but it's just very sturdy black plastic netting - and it works.
 
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Amiga

Overrun with Runners
Jan 3, 2010
23,213
2,814
551
Southern New England
I didn't think of that. Thank you. I was already planning on contacting my vet. My first hen was put on antibiotics and they didn't seem to help... Does that just mean it might've been too late?
Yes, sometimes we are too late. I lost two ducks to egg yolk peritonitis, a systemic infection started by yolk getting loose in the body cavity.
 

Jess427

Hatching
May 5, 2015
5
0
7
Some netting over the top.
Oh, my ducks were loose in the yard foraging. The mallard came into the yard to attack them. Do you mean on top of their pen..? Because their pen is completely enclosed with sturdy metal wire, kind of like heavy duty chicken wire. I just meant that the mallard flew over the fence that separates mine and my neighbor's yards.
 
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Amiga

Overrun with Runners
Jan 3, 2010
23,213
2,814
551
Southern New England
You may need to keep them closer in for a few days until Mr. Romantic goes elsewhere.

We once had a Tom turkey check out our Runner girls, but he kept his distance.
 

Jess427

Hatching
May 5, 2015
5
0
7
You may need to keep them closer in for a few days until Mr. Romantic goes elsewhere.

We once had a Tom turkey check out our Runner girls, but he kept his distance.
Hahaha. I'll try that then. I never thought I could be so mad at a duck as to chase it around the yard threatening it with a stick. (I didn't use it!) I always just thought it was cute that the neighborhood mallards came to hang out. Thanks for all of your advice!
 

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