Found Baby Mallard with deformed feet, please help

luckyducky7April 23, 2009

Hi All, I found a baby duck (Mallard) drowning in the pond. The mother has 6 other chicks and swam off with them leaving this one behind. I swam out and rescued it only to find it has two deformed feet. 3 days ago it was not able to keep up with the mom and it's siblings. However, I have been feeding and exercising it and now it is much stronger. My question is this: Since it has deformed feet, will the mother just lave it again? Or now that it is stronger and can (maybe) keep up with the family, will it be ok? Before it was unable to jump out of the pond with the rest of the family so it would just swim around and around get tired and almost drown, until I rescued it twice. I can not keep this duck as a pet because we live full time in a motorhome. I gave it back to the mom the day after I found it, and she swam off and left it alone a second time. It definitely wants to go with the mom and siblings and they hang out in my back yard all day hearing this poor little guy chirping.

I wonder how many days I can keep it and have the mom still accept it back. OR because of the feet, will she just abandon it over and over again?

Thanks, Lucky Ducky's surrogate Mom

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Unless you can find the mom at night and sneak the chick back to her then, the mother may have already 'forgotten' the chick is hers. Is there an animal rehabilitation or wildlife rescue place anywhere around your area? What is wrong with the feet, are they not fully formed, or were the legs splayed?

    Bookmark   April 23, 2009 at 4:58PM
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She will abandon it again.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2009 at 9:07PM
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Lucky Ducky may indeed be extra lucky. LOTS of people enjoy ducks as pets and a pet duck has a much longer lifespan with less hardship than a wild one.

If your duck has any physical deformity not only will it's mother not take it back now, but even if she did, your duck would be the first to get picked off by a predator.

Lots of hobby farm owners are getting back into small flocks of poultry for natural pest control. Place an add on craigslist (farm/garden section) or at your local feed store and I bet you can find him a new home in a jiffy.

(who has a stock tank full of 1 week old mallard ducklings in the garage!)

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 12:38PM
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