Wednesday: Duck report

As I leave my ducks for a week, I’m satisfied that they’ll be in good hands, getting three square meals a day (and three-course meals, too!). Anna is helping, of course, and we also have a Secret Duck Assistant.

As you see from this photo from Sunday, all ten are still alive. Better than that: they’re healthy, fat, and—as far as I can see—happy.  Katie, like Honey, is a great mom, watching her brood eat before she takes a few bites. Note the camouflage coloration of the ducklings, which probably make them look like sun-dappled dirt or leaves.

The ducklings are clearly larger now, and their spiky feathers are coming in. The white specks on the surface are Mazuri Waterfowl Starter Chow: haute cuisine for mallards. They also get defrosted frozen corn and mealworms.

Nomming:

I love to watch the ducklings duck themselves underwater after lunch, a trick they learned from watching Mom. You can see “porpoising” in this video:

After a good wash, the brood repairs to the central cement ring to rest and watch the world go by:

There they sleep and groom:

The ducklings have now learned to preen, and here they and Mom have a simultaneous bout of grooming:

Mom usually joins them on the central cement circle, watching over them. Look at Katie’s beautiful blue speculum!

The turtles are out in force when the sun comes out, heating up on Duck Island #1. They stretch their necks and legs to absorb the maximum sunlight:

The ducklings and turtles have a good relationship: they largely ignore each other but the turtles thrive on the uneaten duckling food as well as on the corn that sinks to the bottom. It’s quite an ecosystem in Botany Pond, and we now have baby goldfish, too.

 

8 Comments

  1. Randall Schenck
    Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:14 am | Permalink

    They might consider adding some correct sized logs in a few places. Gives the turtles more area to lay around in the sun.

  2. Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    These ducks and your loving descriptions of them are exactly what I needed to see this morning in a world going mad.

  3. Ken Kukec
    Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:44 am | Permalink

    Fancy multi-course haute cuisine, and they don’t even need to figure out which fork goes with which course. Pretty good deal for ducks, I’d say.

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted May 22, 2019 at 8:57 am | Permalink

      Duck soup, as they say.

      • Ken Kukec
        Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:35 am | Permalink

        All that’s missing is Margaret Dumont.

  4. marta
    Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    but won’t the baby goldfish grow up to be Koi fish?

  5. Charles Sawicki
    Posted May 22, 2019 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Nice!

  6. Posted May 25, 2019 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

    They have gained weight.


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