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Dr_Kitty, Veterinarian
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 539
Experience:  Veterinarian
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How can I tell if my Pekin ducks are male or female? I just

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How can I tell if my Pekin ducks are male or female? I just got three this past March and they are great but one of them recenlty stared acting a little funny. It's not as active as the other two and wants to rest more and is breathing heavy. I was outside today watching them and it had half its body under my paddle boat and the other half was sticking out. If I go near it it seems to perk up and move but is not acting normal. I live in Northeast Pa and today is the first day of fall and they seem to love it outside. I'm not sure what to think. Thank you.
Hi there.

Firstly, the male duck will have a little curly Q tail, while the females do not. If the one sick is not a male, I would be concerned about a few things, including being egg bound.

What is their diet?
Did you have further questions?

If my answer was helpful, please leave me a rating :)
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I feed them a basic starter/grower from my local feed mill. I think they all look like they are males but I'm not a 100 percent sure. If they one acting funny is female, why would her diet all of the sudden matter?

If they are on starter that is medicated, ducks cannot appropriately metabolize the chemical. They need to be on unmedicated feed.

My ducks are about the same age and they have started laying eggs. You should switch over to a growth maintenance feed, as they need more calcium in order to form the egg shells. Without proper calcium, they can have egg formation problems, and sometimes, become egg bound.

If you can catch her up tomorrow, I would take her into the vet to do an abdominal xray. They will be able to tell if if she has an egg in her reproductive tract. Depending on what they see, you can make up a treatment plan with your vet. Additionally, since they live outside, I would check all over the bird for any wounds, as sometimes predators can get ahold of these outside birds.

Let me know what you find and we can go from there. :)
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

I know the feed is not medicated. I will switch them over to a growth maintenance soon. I got pretty close to all three and do not see any injuries. she/he seemed to be a little better yesterday. I will keep watching. Thank you.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Hey, went out this morning and found an egg by pond. What do I do with it? I think that was the issue!!!

You can leave it there to see if she will lay a clutch or you can eat it. I heard that they are great to eat! Keep an eye out for more!

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