Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Wild Wednesday, Saving Daisy

This Wild Wednesday is a somewhat semi-domesticated "Wild" Wednesday. About a year or so ago, my dear friend Liz, who is an active member of the self proclaimed "Crazy Women's Chicken Club" decided to veer away from the poultry class, of whom the "club" is named and brought home 3 beautiful Mallard babies with the plan of brooding them, then releasing them into the wild with the hope that every spring they would return from their migration, to the home where they were raised, which in Liz's case, would be her large pond in the backyard.

This year, the ducks returned, grown and healthy, and one ended up being a cross between perhaps a Rouen? We're not sure, but none the less, the female decided to make a nest in the side yard and brood a clutch of eggs. Twenty one days passed and the little ones popped out right on time under a bush on her side yard. Mamma and the babies quickly headed for the creek that flows behind the pond, and off they went to a new home unknown. All but one. Daisy.

When Liz found Daisy, her mother had forced her from the nest, Liz tried to return her, but each time the mother would have nothing to do with her. When the mother took the babies down the creek Daisy was left behind, unable to walk or to stand. Without a mother to take care of her, Daisy would surely parish. We quickly found why the mother had turned her away, she was bow legged, and in nature, though it sounds cruel, a duck with a "handicap" would slow down the rest of the flock and put the whole group in danger.
Liz called the local "Wild Animal Authorities" which gave the wonderfully helpful suggestion of "leaving it for dead," thank you very much. She explained that the ducks weren't technically wild, and that leaving it to die was out of the question. The helpful animal authorities said it was in her hands.
And in capable hands she is. Daisy is doing great! She is eating and drinking, walking and swimming, and growing into a capable duck. All it took was a little time and compassion. Liz has her under a brooder light and Daisy goes for therapeutic warm swims every day.







I had a bow legged farm duck and we would let her swim in warm water, then stretch her legs to help correctly form her muscles. She responded wonderfully.
Daisy also has a healthy assortment of food and plenty of family to dote on her. Liz is currently in the process of locating some additional domesticated Mallard Ducklings for Daisy to grow up with.

4 comments:

liz said...

I love it! Daisy is doing great and got to swim in the little pond out front today all by her self!

Anonymous said...

Duck physical therapy is what Crazy Chicken Women do. -Shannon

Maryellen Ackroyd said...

so sweet that you cared for her and encouraged her to swim, walk and eat. How fun to raise a duckling!

Maryellen Ackroyd said...

so sweet that you cared for her and encouraged her to swim, walk and eat. How fun to raise a duckling!

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