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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I would like to ask for a bit of advice really. I'm caring at present for an injured 3 week old Mallard duckling, who has suffered (infected) head and neck injuries after being attacked by a predator (probably a Herring Gull). The little one is doing fine, and I think that it will be completely back to normal in perhaps 1 to 2 weeks. Theoretically there is a good chance to reunite the little fellow with its mum and three siblings, as I know where to find them. Do you think that they (mum and siblings) would accept the duckling after they have been separated for about 1 to 2 weeks? Has somebody tried that before? Or, would it be better in your opinion (and experience) to care for the bird as long as necessary until it is ready for an "independent" release?

Many thanks,

Stephan.
 

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I don't know the answer to your question, but I think its great that you helped the little duck. Most people wouldn't have. I do know alot of people have ducks as pets. If thats an option. What are you feeding it? min
 

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Hi,

I would like to ask for a bit of advice really. I'm caring at present for an injured 3 week old Mallard duckling, who has suffered (infected) head and neck injuries after being attacked by a predator (probably a Herring Gull). The little one is doing fine, and I think that it will be completely back to normal in perhaps 1 to 2 weeks. Theoretically there is a good chance to reunite the little fellow with its mum and three siblings, as I know where to find them. Do you think that they (mum and siblings) would accept the duckling after they have been separated for about 1 to 2 weeks? Has somebody tried that before? Or, would it be better in your opinion (and experience) to care for the bird as long as necessary until it is ready for an "independent" release?

Many thanks,

Stephan.
More people with better experience with ducks should be along soon.
But I think it would be best to raise him until he's ready for independent release. And then I would take him to where the other ducks are.
If he's rejected by mom and siblings at least he will know how to survive on his own.
 

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I agree that the best approach is just to raise this little duckling for release by itself or with an unrelated duckling or two should you get them in. The Mamas quickly forget when one goes missing or is killed, and I suspect that a reunion attempt at this point would be less than successful. Sometimes they do remember (the Mom) but not often.

Thank you so much for helping this duckling!

Terry
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I agree that the best approach is just to raise this little duckling for release by itself or with an unrelated duckling or two should you get them in. The Mamas quickly forget when one goes missing or is killed, and I suspect that a reunion attempt at this point would be less than successful. Sometimes they do remember (the Mom) but not often.

Thank you so much for helping this duckling!

Terry

Many thanks for your thoughts. This is what I thought as well. If the release is done and not successful, then there is no way back. With regards to the memory capabilities of ducks, I'm not that sure, but I still get "told off" by last years mums, who I had to catch (including the ducklings) to get them from an inner hospital courtyard (without water access) to release them at the pond. They do clearly recognise different people, which doesn't make life easier, if one has two catch the same mum one year later again. What would be your release criteria, apart from full health?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I don't know the answer to your question, but I think its great that you helped the little duck. Most people wouldn't have. I do know alot of people have ducks as pets. If thats an option. What are you feeding it? min
Hi Mindy,

Normally all our Mallard ducklings out in the wild (I mean the ones born and living in enclosed hospital courtyards without access to water and food) are raised with chicken crumb for the first week, which then gets gradually replaced by a special pelleted duck and swan food. The little fellow I have got at home is getting a special treatment, as one can imagine, because of it's injuries. The duckling called Tom is on pellet food which is softened in water mixed with "Guardian Angel" (in-water food supplement for injured or stressed birds), some dried meal worms, young chopped sting nettles and the odd piece of white bread. During daytime he is now out in the garden and is getting additional greens straight from there.

Stephan.
 
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