Caring for Your DUCK
A balanced diet is important for your bird.
· Feed and water containers should be at least 10cm deep and 30cm square to allow for the duck's "shovelling" feeding action.
· Access to grass and grazing is essential, as is fresh water, as ducks need to drink 4-5 times the weight of the food they eat.
· Your duck may be supplied a balanced selection of fresh vegetables such as spinach, beans, parsley, broccoli, silverbeet, etc.
· Seed, wheat and corn etc. should be fed as a treat and should not form the majority of the diet
· Do not give your duck chocolate, coffee or avocado – these are toxic to birds.
· Worm every 3-6 months and have a crop tube worming at least once yearly. If eggs are to be eaten care must be taken to check withholding periods.
· Spray for mites every 6-12 weeks.
· Book a yearly check-up to detect general health problems, chlamydia and parasite infestations.
· Test or treat for chlamydia annually. Chlamydia and a similar disease, mycoplasma, are very common in ducks. Chlamydia can spread to humans. Birds may show signs such as sneezing, weight loss and/or green watery droppings, or no signs at all.
· Botulism, caused by a bacterial toxin, is also observed in ducks and immediate veterinary care is essential. It is usually contracted by consumption of rotten food, decaying vegetation, or wading in stagnant water. The first sign of poisoning is usually a drooping head with progression to paralysis of the wings, legs and neck.
Remember – Birds often mask the signs of illness and may only show signs of being unwell when they are very sick.
Heavy Metal Poisoning
Heavy metal poisoning is extremely common. Lead, zinc and copper are the metals involved and are found in galvanised wire, paint, copper wires, metal ties, rusty metal toys, costume jewellery, solder, old material in the yard, sump oil, flaking paint and high lead soils in the inner city etc.
· Avoid using metal objects such as galvanised food bowls or plastic-coated bag ties in the cage.
Content © Copyright Bird Veterinarian
All care has been taken to ensure that the information contained on, and accessed through, this web site is correct but Bird Veterinarian accepts no responsibility nor liability for, and makes no representations with respect to the accuracy or completeness of the information on this web site. The information contained on the Bird Veterinarian web site is intended as a general guide only and should not be relied on in place of professional veterinary consultation.