Baby Ducks


Faith S
Perpetually learning gardener
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Alabama, USA

25 Apr '07 1:55 am
Thanks dear Liza. You are the one who is "sugar sweet". I have to rush off for a dentist appointment this morning, but wanted to quickly respond to your post. I will have to return to the Forum later to read all the new posts by everyone. I seem to miss so much during this rushed time.
Faith at Bide-a-Wee Farm, Alabama, USA

Come abide with me a wee while.

Jack Holloway
Passionate Gardener
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SEQUOIA FARM Haenertsburg South Africa

Out for a duck?

27 Apr '07 8:17 am
Ouch, no. After SA's dismal performance against Australia in the World Cup Cricket semi-final last night, let's not go that route... except to say I'll be shouting for New Zealand now, in honour of our many friends met here...

Lovely to see a pic of you, Faith, and your delightful ducklings. Wonderful to admire them in VIRTUAL reality - I have a hard enough time cleaning up after myself! People and their names: I have a wonderful friend called Joy, totally appropriate; I once knew a women called Hope who was always optimistic about something better just around the corner; and I have long suspected that Faith suits you very well, and the pic somehow supports that (and NOT because you are on your knees :) )

Liza, you asked about ducks and geese in another post, and I suggested my definition of the difference. Last night we had a fascinating ornithologist as our guest speaker at Rotary, who spoke inter alia on the fact that Myna birds have now been declared invasive aliens, as have Mallard ducks. He confirms my broad definition of the differences between ducks and geese. He also tells me that the white domestic duck is bred from the green headed Mallard duck - it is basically an albino form - and as such is considered an invasive alien now in South Africa, and can only be kept under very controlled circumstances. Apparantly Mallard ducks are relatively unique in the animal world - they are inclined to rape other ducks, which leads to hybridisation and several indigineous ducks have impure strains now!

Faith S
Perpetually learning gardener
User avatar
Alabama, USA

Oh no!

28 Apr '07 2:29 am
Jack, such dire things you have said about my innocent little baby Mallards. Rapists and thugs!

Unfortunately, some predator got to my ducks while they were closed up tight in my garage and now I only have four. They are growing very fast, but I guess they are still too small to be placed in the pen I have been busily constructing this week. They have been moved back into my "mud" room for safekeeping for now. I never imagined being a mother duck to be so difficult.

There is a wild pair of Mallards that come to my small farm every spring to nest and I saw the mother last Sunday with five little balls of fluff swimming on our small marsh pond. They must have just hatched out. I haven't seen them since, so she has moved them somewhere. Last year she started out with five, but they dwindled down to two before becoming juviniles and then one of those was hit by a car on the highway.

Mallards may be nuisances in South Africa, but they have a hard time surviving around here. Too many predators out there lurking.
Faith at Bide-a-Wee Farm, Alabama, USA

Come abide with me a wee while.

Faith S
Perpetually learning gardener
User avatar
Alabama, USA

Duck World

8 May '07 11:02 am
Finally, the duck pen is completed and the babies have spent their first night out. They were so funny when I first introduced them to their new home. They were very suspicious of that big blue wading pool sitting in the corner of the run; however, as the pictures I am posting show, it didn't take them long to take to it.
Baby ducks investigate pool.jpg
They first just stretched their necks to drink the water.
Getting braver.jpg
Finally, the bravest of the lot discovered how to climb the stairs.
First one in.jpg
He actually slipped in and just sat on the brick platform for a few minutes.
Oh my, what's he doing.jpg
When he began to swim, all the others were goggle eyed.
Second thinking.jpg
Then a second one climbed the steps.
Four ducks swimming.jpg
Before long all four were in the pool.
Making a splash.jpg
They decided this was really fun. They began to duck their heads and splash around.
Diving duck.jpg
The first one actually dove under and swam under water for a second. It scared all the others away.
Faith at Bide-a-Wee Farm, Alabama, USA

Come abide with me a wee while.

moosey
head gardener
User avatar

Go Duckworld!

8 May '07 12:20 pm
As the proud owner (?) of Henworld I am really enjoying seeing your Duckworld, Faith!
Head Gardener
mooseyscountrygarden.com
http://www.mooseyscountrygarden.com

Dixie
garden enthusiast
User avatar
Waikato-New Zealand

Little duck

8 May '07 2:51 pm
I have just queried your avatar in another post ,before I found this -Faith they are adorable -I can't believe how they've grown -The first pic is so funny about them all being suspicious !
Dixie.(honorary Auntie, aka 'Old Duck)

Liza
gardening consultant
User avatar
Waterloo, Belgium

A pure blessed experience!

8 May '07 8:12 pm
Dear Faith, I just can't express how happy I am for you!! I just imagine myself being there with you while you were shooting the babies facing their first waterworld!...It would be such a divine experience! Me, a born Nature lover, grown up in the big,cold, inhumane cities the most of my life; and having the blessing to eventually experience quite late --- mind-body-spirit! --- such divine Nature experiences, either on my own, or through you, my Nature companions!!

Oh, thank you, Faith!! THANK YOU!
"..So,perhaps, it is easiest, through awareness of flowers in particular, of their radiant beauty and purity, their vibrant colour, to come to the excellence of the One and be uplifted beyond thought to our divine selves".Dorothy Maclean

Faith S
Perpetually learning gardener
User avatar
Alabama, USA

Swimming ducks

9 May '07 3:57 am
Thanks to all of you. I actually went out late to check on them after dark and caught them all swimming. When I turned on the light and told them they should all be in bed, they scampered out of the pool and rushed headlong into their enclosure. I don't think they realized I had snuck up on them.

It doesn't take them long to make the water really murky. I have already emptied the pool and refilled with fresh water one time and it will need it again today I'm afraid. I saved the water to use on my garden plants, so it was a lot of work to empty. Being a mother duck is really hard work.

By the way, I saw the wild Mallard mama duck with her five babies this morning. I was afraid she had lost them all since I had seen her a couple of times without them. I guess she was just hiding them until they grew a little larger. She seems a little curious about the babies in the pen. I have seen her walking around the pond with her neck stretched tall and looking toward the pen.
Faith at Bide-a-Wee Farm, Alabama, USA

Come abide with me a wee while.

Faith S
Perpetually learning gardener
User avatar
Alabama, USA

First pictures of Duckworld

9 May '07 4:01 am
I forgot to post these first pictures I captured with my old camera when I first put them in the pen.
Duck World.jpg
The new duck pen.
Home at last.jpg
The photo title says it all.
Faith at Bide-a-Wee Farm, Alabama, USA

Come abide with me a wee while.

Faith S
Perpetually learning gardener
User avatar
Alabama, USA

Wild ducks

9 May '07 2:09 pm
I tried to get a photo of the wild Mallard with her five babies. It is hard to see the babies because they blend in with the bare soil alongside the pond. This is the horse's favorite watering site, so they keep the earth bare here. I hope you can make out the little ones. She was hurrying them away from me because she realized I had spotted them.
Wild mama duck and babies.jpg
Faith at Bide-a-Wee Farm, Alabama, USA

Come abide with me a wee while.

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