Why are two of my ducklings small and scraggly?

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by iamcuriositycat, Aug 2, 2010.

  1. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Songster

    Jul 30, 2009
    Charlotte, NC
    When I hatch ducks myself, the last few to hatch always seem so much smaller than the others for several days, because they grow so fast that even a 36 hour difference in age makes a difference. But this time is a little different, and I'm wondering if anyone has any insight.

    All seven ducks are vigorous and active, eating and drinking. Two of them are about 2/3 the size of the others and skinny... and scraggly. It's like their down never quite fluffs out properly. One of the two had a hard time hatching and dragged his umbilicus for a while and had to have a couple baths to get the stickiness off of him. One of his wings was glued to his body with gunk until I washed it for some time in warm water. The other one had a normal hatch.

    All the ducklings hatched late last week.

    Neither of these ducklings are birds I was planning to keep, but I don't feel good about selling a bird that's not thriving either. Anyone have insight into what might be causing this and the likely prognosis? Like I said, they are active and behave normally.

  2. rgn87

    rgn87 Songster

    Mar 17, 2010
    I had a duck who was noticeably smaller than all the other ducks the whole time,and she is still the smallest one. I thinks some ducks are just naturally bigger than others.
  3. katharinad

    katharinad Overrun with chickens

    I had that too, and it took until they hit 8 weeks for all to be equal in size. All you can do is provide good nutrition and let nature take care of things. Add a tiny bowl with builder's sand to their brooder so they can digest their food better. They wont be taken much of it, but I feel it does aid them.

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