Last year we purchased what we were told were two female ducklings - to keep the two male ducks that had adopted us company.
It turned out the females were males...
Four male ducks is not a good combination.
Those little ducklings took some punishment from the old males - the back of their necks being the main site. No bad punishment, but enough to make me feel guilty.
I just didn't know what to do with them. The lady who sold them to us, had given us the last two of three ducklings - and the remaining one was also a male.
So - I vacillated. For too long.
The two ducklings gobbled up their feed, spent their days trying to evade the older two, and when they were good and strong, they, obviously after some discussion, and weeks of discontent, took flight and departed for calmer waters. Overnight.
Which left the two original males. One of them developed a limp - we renamed him Hopalong - and although we gave him a good going over, we could find nothing wrong.
One night he, too, disappeared. I reckon it was either the rooikat, or an otter. But nary a trace did we find - no loose feathers, no scene of protesting capture. Nada.
That left just the one.
He was a bit grumbly when he discovered he was all alone, but we made sure to spend time with him everyday - having a quacking good conversation together. His appetite improved and all appeared good.
I have had adverts up on Gumtree - had written to duck owners in our area - all to no avail. He remained our solitary duck.
And what pleasure he gave us with his antics.
After the recent good rains, our dam filled up overnight. Finally, a duck discovered the pleasure of frolicking about in the dam water - spending each and every day - all day - paddling, ducking, digging for insects at the now soft soil at the waterline.
These are some pics I took of him in the early hours of the morning earlier last week...
|Good boy - he's cleaning behind his ears... :)|
|Heading towards the food bowl...|
It's not easy to take a pic of a duck in flight
Unfortunately, his newly acquired skill in flying obviously spurred him on, and two days ago he, too, disappeared - flying off to greener pastures. The last time I saw him was when I fed him, and he waddled to his water bowl to take a drink. Maybe he found a wild duck he fancied...?
Sad - he brought us joy - and smiles.