Why are two of my ducklings small and scraggly?

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

  1. iamcuriositycat

    iamcuriositycat Chillin' With My Peeps

    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 Chillin' With My Peeps

    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.

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by