Friday, 18 January 2013

And then the Ducks arrived.

Now, Keith has always had a thing about ducks and he's always wanted to have some on the pond. Every year we have had a pair of wild ducks nest, they arrive about February  and leave around August with ducklings. Last year the duck lost her first nest by the pond, so moved nearer the house and laid around 12 eggs. One day she disappeared and we don't know if the fox had her or she hatched her brood and walked off. The Daddy duck stayed around for a few weeks before he left, we think he may have been looking for her.
Anyway, a friend of my sons breeds ducks and he had a drake that was starting to fight and needed a new home. Seemed like a good idea to get a duck, so armed with a cardboard box I went off to get him. That's him above with Gladys and Flo. He wasn't a year old then and has coloured up a lot since that photo. He was named 'Duck Norris', I know it's a terrible name but it's stuck. He followed the chickens into the covered run but preferred to sleep outside on some hay that I put in there for him. The chickens wouldn't go past him, so he had to be first out in the morning. Never having seen water bigger than a paddling pool, the pond was an experience for him, especially when Keith picked him up and gently threw him in! At last he found his true paddling legs, he could wash and splash to his hearts delight.
We bought a large dog kennel for him to sleep in and made a covered run from two metal goal posts screwed together and covered in chicken wire. Flo would often keep him company at night.
We thought he might be lonely and there was an auction of waterfowl locally so off we went, trusty cardboard box in the back of the car.
Lo and behold there were two female crested Silver Appleyards there, we suspected that Duck Norris was an Appleyard, perfect. We got them! Named Daisy and Jemima they all got along beautifully with D.N. teaching them the delights of the pond. It was a bit of a pain getting them off the pond at night and into the dog kennel so we could lock them up.
See, Duck Norris has a green head now and is becoming more colourful.

Now, at this auction was a chocolate Indian Runner duck that my youngest son, Alden, who had come with us, fell in love with, but sadly we were outbid. I promised him that if I could find one he could have one for his birthday. Thanks to the power of the Internet we found one for sale. When we went to look at her there four other fawn and white ones also for sale.Talk about impulse buying, we came home with five instead of one and Alden was over the moon. Best birthday present ever, and yes, he does help with them. Bubble is his favourite chocolate bar so that's her name.
Apparently Runners aren't to bothered about water - so that must be why they are on the pond
                                                      ALL DAY!!

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