Why did my Runner Boy Die????

Discussion in 'Ducks' started by Suzie, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

    3,091
    622
    298
    Jul 9, 2009
    Auvergne
    Hi anyone here who has Runner or any ducks for that matter....

    I Have ( had) twelve runner ducks - all in great health, apart from Dirk who started limping a week ago - Dirk was isolated from the main flock and was living with "Chips" and the baby Muscovy duckings.... Dirk had problems in walking, we thought he was being attacked by the Muscovy girls - it turned out to be true ( observations from us ) - he thrived with Chips and the babies - he swam in the bath and seemed interested in his surroundings - somehow this evening he seemed to me to change - no interest in food nor his companions, I picked him up and spent over an hour cuddling him in my arms, trying to encourage him to thrive.... lit a log fire indoors and put him down in front of the fire with our GSD who cuddled up to him - he died an hour ago - he is still in front of the fire with the dog.... whatever could have happened for him to lose walking functions and to finally succumb to whatever he died of......

    I am so very sad for losing him - he was ( and is ) one of my babies

    My tears are for him tonight..... when does heartache become normal????? Never in my world! Give your babies cuddles and affection, think of them in your dreams and be satisfied that you are so very fortunate to have known true love.

    Suzie

    ( and lately Dirk ..... still here in the warmth and love of his family - beside the log fire ..I cannot bear to think of his burial yet.... tomorrow is another day)

    [​IMG]
     
  2. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

    12,308
    170
    323
    Sep 7, 2009
    Florida - Space Coast
    any number of things could have been wrong. Ducks hide problems often until it is too late, or close to too late.

    he could have eaten something toxic

    could have had an injury

    could have had bumblefoot that was not treated

    without a necropsy its all guessing
     
  3. Miss Lydia

    Miss Lydia Running over with Blessings Premium Member

    69,874
    5,597
    671
    Oct 3, 2009
    Western N.C.
    Suzie I am so sorry to hear about your Runner Dirk, If the Muscovy girls were picking on him he could have had internal injuries you probably won't ever know, but you know he knew you loved him and that is special. [​IMG]
     
  4. Amiga

    Amiga Overrun with Runners Premium Member

    22,979
    1,950
    471
    Jan 3, 2010
    Southern New England
    [​IMG]

    I think Celtic Oaks covered a number of possible reasons. There can be internal problems with ducklings that we are unaware of until they slip away. It is a good sign that you are affected by losing him, and concerned for the reasons. You care about the ducks, and that is important.
     
  5. canard

    canard Chillin' With My Peeps

    132
    3
    71
    Jul 22, 2012
    How sad about your Runner. I lost one Runner this summer to what we suspect was a hawk abduction. I just had to put my dog to sleep last Monday. I am heartbroken as well. At least you tried your best to save and rehabilitate your Runner and have your other feathered and furry friends to keep you company.
     
  6. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

    3,091
    622
    298
    Jul 9, 2009
    Auvergne
    Thank you all for your responses

    I did at first check that Dirk did not have any injury nor bumblefoot infection - nothing was evident....... he maybe could have eaten something toxic, we do have a lot of fungi here at this time of year, which is of great concern to me - we are treating with chlorine to minimise the risk to the fowl and to the feet of the horses and donkeys.

    I have had to remove two duckings from the stable housing Chips and the babies - one of which has been attacked and it's backside is raw, observing the duckings this afternoon one of them is attacking the others relentlessly .... the raw backside duckling is now in intensive care and the offending duckling has been re-housed with the adult ducklings... on observing the behaviour of the juvenile offender it was incredibly aggressive with the adult ducks.... Pie ( the Mother) was aggressive and maybe the juvenile needs to learn better manners...hopefully all will resolve itself.... I am tired of firefighting!!!!

    Suzie
     
  7. canard

    canard Chillin' With My Peeps

    132
    3
    71
    Jul 22, 2012
    Some vets or veterinary teaching hospitals will do necropsies (animal autopsies) for a fee. If the "not knowing" is eating at you, it is an option. Do you guys have a lot of West Nile Virus where you live this year? Maybe even your state's DNR would do a necropsy if West Nile Virus is suspected.

    Too bad about the aggressive duckling. When I first rescued the Campbells, the Pekin would chase them off a bit. The Pekin were pretty mellow about the newcomers overall. They were not violent. When I first rescued the Runners, SOME of the Campbells were quite aggressive towards them, lunging and pecking at their heads and necks and chasing them away from the flock. They were really throwing their weight into it too. Some were quite mean. I put them in a separate coop at night for a few months and kept the Runners penned and separate during the day for a while. I also squirted the mean ducks with a hose if they "attacked" & chased them to get them to stop lunge-pecking at the poor Runners' heads and necks. I didn't see the Runner get taken while they free ranged, but they were scared of any large bird overhead after that morning. I was in and out of the house all morning. I suspect a hawk was waiting in a nearby tree & the Campbells chased a poor Runner away from the flock and the hawk took advantage.

    Do you find that when you have new ducklings that they integrate well with the more established ducks or that there is a lot of aggression between the "new" and the "old". Do you have multiple breeds coexisting peacefully? Have you ever tried integrating adult ducks from a different flock to your existing flock? I have considered adding some more older ducklings or adult ducks to my flock. A local lady has some Cayugas and Pekin she is trying to give away.
     
  8. Suzie

    Suzie Overrun With Chickens

    3,091
    622
    298
    Jul 9, 2009
    Auvergne
    Canard - Thanks for the comments.... we live in France and no Veterinary practise would entertain carrying out an autopsy here....

    We have various breeds of ducks and geese here - the ducks are mainly Muscovy and Indian Runners.... all co-exist well together and they respect Elvis who was the first Muscovy males - he is in charge of geese and ducks here and he will admonish any bad behaviour by a sharp "bill bite" which normally sorts out the problem, I purchased some adult Muscovy girls and boys last Summer and they integrated well with all of the others.... the problem at the moment is the baby ducklings that Pie hatched, she was removed from the stable as she started to attack "Chips" and damaged him quite badly ( Chips is a few weeks older than the baby ducklings ) - one of the babies started attacking it's Brothers and Sisters for no apparent reason - one of them was very bloody and has been treated with wound powder and isolated for now - the offending baby continued to attack the others and now it is with the adults, pecking at them too!!!! It will learn very soon how not to behave!

    Good luck if you do get others!

    Suzie
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by