Trevor the duck is okay

On September 25 of last year, I reported on the plight of Trevor the Duck, a lonely male mallard who had somehow found himself on the small island of Niue, 2800 km from New Zealand. Niue is described by Wikipedia as “a self-governing state in free association with New Zealand.”  (The name “Trevor” came from Trevor Mallard, a New Zealand politician.)

Niue is a coral island without free-standing water, and nobody knows how Trevor got there. He found a small puddle, but it had to be continually topped up by the locals as it shrank. The Niue fire department then stepped in, adding water as needed. For a while Trevor was harassed by a rooster, but the antagonism seems to have stopped.

Trevor, his puddle, and the rooster

In partnership with the stalwart Heather Hastie, a native Kiwi, I made efforts to get Trevor sent to New Zealand, where there’s plenty of fresh water and also potential mates, but that came to naught because New Zealand has strict regulations about what can be brought into the country—even an errant mallard. The government turned down my offer to help finance Trevor’s move to New Zealand.

Finally, through Heather’s inquiries, we learned that a group of Kiwi veterinarians were going to Niue and would check on Trevor’s health and status. As the office of Winston Peters, New Zealand’s Deputy Prime Minister wrote Heather:

A voluntary group of Auckland Veterinarians, due on-island in October to deliver services for island pets and wildlife, have been asked by DAFF [Niue’s Department of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries] to give the duck a health check. These arrangements should secure a safe future for the duck in Niue, allowing the local population, and interested tourists, to enjoy visiting Niue’s celebrity duck.

Of course I wanted to know how things went with the vet, and asked Heather to write Winston Peters around Christmas, asking about the status of the checkup. Today there finally came a reply, indicating that Trevor is well. To wit:

From: W Peters (MIN) []
Sent: Thursday, 17 January 2019 11:25 AM
To: Heather Hastie
Subject: RE: 1862 Heather Hastie

Dear Heather

On behalf of Rt Hon Winston Peters, Minister of Foreign Affairs, thank you for your follow-up email regarding the mallard duck in Niue.

We understand that the duck was assessed by the visiting veterinarians who declared him fit and healthy.  We have not received any update or other information from the Premier or Niue’s Department of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF) regarding the mallard duck, but trust that DAFF are taking steps that are appropriate in the circumstances.

Kind regards,

I’m glad, then, that Trevor is well, but of course he’s still lonely, and the Puddle Problem remains. But the people of Niue have taken to Trevor, for publicity about “the world’s loneliest duck” has been worldwide, and Trevor even has his own Facebook page. Judging by the video entry on December 18, things are looking ducky.  But I’m sure the lad would like the company of a mallard hen.


  1. Michael Fisher
    Posted January 16, 2019 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

    DAFFy duck
    With Nazis, lisps & mock German accents – something for everyone. Not as funny as Donald D. though – why is that?:

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted January 16, 2019 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      I’ve always preferred Daffy to Donald. But then, I like my cartoon humor darker, more verbal, and harder-edged. De gustibus …

      • rickflick
        Posted January 16, 2019 at 8:28 pm | Permalink

        Yes. Daffy.

      • Diane G
        Posted January 16, 2019 at 8:53 pm | Permalink


      • Posted January 17, 2019 at 11:39 am | Permalink

        Daffy, absolutely.

        Though seeing him work with Donald in _Who Framed Roger Rabbit_ was a treat. 😉

    • Posted January 16, 2019 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

      I have to go with Donald. (Don’t quote me out of context with that sentence.)

      Donald was a more complex character, prone to both fits of rage and sentimentality, and he spoke complete, sensible english sentences. And then there was his whole clan and social circle — Huey, Louie, Dewey, Scrooge McDuck, Gladstone Gander, Gyro Gearloose, and, of course, Daisy.

      Donald and Mickey had a complex relationship — great friends at times, but in later life troubled by professional jealously.

  2. Mark Sturtevant
    Posted January 16, 2019 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

    A kiddie pool might make the Puddle Problem a bit easier to manage.

    • Posted January 16, 2019 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, I thought of that, but it would have to be a BIG pool and also be cleaned out regularly–an onerous job.

    • Heather Hastie
      Posted January 16, 2019 at 7:27 pm | Permalink

      The water might get too hot, and be difficult for Trevor to get in and out of too because of the heat on the plastic. Niue is a tropical island and the ground is hard-baked. There’s very little soil – just a small layer on top of coral so the water stands better than it would most places.

      Niue originally made its money selling guano. (Not sure if it still does.)

  3. Posted January 16, 2019 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

    This is so great. Go, Trevor!

  4. Barry Lyons
    Posted January 16, 2019 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

    The best words in this post: “harassed by a rooster.”

    • Barbara Radcliff
      Posted January 16, 2019 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

      Yes, ‘harassed by a rooster’ would almost fit into Pirates of Penzance — apprenticed to a pirate!

    • Posted January 16, 2019 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

      Toxic masculinity

  5. busterggi
    Posted January 16, 2019 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

    All’s well in Duckburg.

  6. Posted January 17, 2019 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    I like the photo.

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