So today I got more ducks! We thought it over recently because we have all this space in the big duck house that we heat in the winter. We thought why not add a few more ducks to make it more worth heating?
So I started searching for more ducks. I wasn’t concerned about purebred or a certain breed but I ended up with runners and Cayugas which I have really wanted besides welsh Harlequin. To be honest though, I kind of doubt there is a duck I wouldn’t want. Lol
So I ended up getting 2 runners and 2 Cayuga. I am not entirely sure if they are completely purebred or not but they are gorgeous. They do look a bit disheveled after their trip here but will look better as they go in the water and preen themselves.
Cayuga are a favorite because they are black with a green sheen on them when the light hits them just right. They lay black eggs at the beginning of the season and then slowly the eggs apparently lighten. I like to think their printer slowly runs out of ink. 😂 they are supposed to be more docile than other breeds as well. The one drawback is that they can lay fewer eggs than other ducks but that is ok with me.
Runners fascinate me. They are like bowling pins who are apparently a bit scatter brained. They have personality+ though. They are apparently clownish and hilarious to watch. They also run. They don’t waddle. They run. I can’t wait to watch them run! They are also amazing foragers which we need here. The area the ducks cover, is always weed free now because they eat the weeds and has much fewer bugs because they LOVE bugs. We want to increase the area they are in so we can further reduce the amount of weeds we have to pull around the fruit trees. So Runners will be excellent for this. Runners make poor mothers apparently which is fine with me. I am tired of having ducks wanting to be moms and being broody. Our welshies are bad for broodiness.
So far i haven’t been able to see much of them in terms of personality because they are quite scared. But the largest Cayuga reminds me of Mary. Kind of a rebel I suppose. She is huge too. Curvy. Well fed. Big boned. You can pick. Lol She already had words with Mary through the fence and I am not sure who won. Lol she is also a big flirt like Lucy used to be. She knows who the men are in the group! She was ready to flaunt her stuff in front of them too. Lol the other 3 mostly hid in the duck house so we will have to wait and see what they are like. I love how pretty they are though!
My other ducks are unsure of what to make of them. It is quite funny. My ducks just keep staring at them like “what are you?” “You sound like us but you don’t look like us.” The one Cayuga is maybe close to twice the size of mine and black, curvy and just plain gorgeous. The runners are super thin and stand really tall compared to mine. They must look like aliens to my ducks! I think they are so pretty though in their own way.
Charles did get annoyed with the flirty Cayuga though who has her eyes set on him more than George. He tried to nip at her through the fence. This could be interesting! Poor Charles could have her chasing him around the pen! Lol maybe she will be too much woman for him to handle? We shall see. 😀
Below are some photos. Not the best photos but better ones will come. 😀 it is hard to tell who the big girl is when you don’t see my ducks beside them but you can still tell she is bigger than the other 3 I think.
I am going to keep this post short and sweet because I have had a really long day and tomorrow will be long and exciting too! I can’t wait to share the news with you all!
The ducks love water and they love even more when it mixes with dirt to make mud. So when I drain their pool, it creates a giant mud puddle for them to play in and I think that has to be the highlight of the week. I mean, what could be more fun for a duck than a giant mud puddle? 😀
I figured I would take some video to share so that I can show you how the pool drains and how much fun the ducks have. Lol in the video, you can see the pool inside the pen surrounded by deck and the drain pipe comes underneath the deck and then the end of the drain is under the fence. This way, the water drains away from the pen and the ducks can play in it once more. Lol eventually it might be nice to put a tree back there and the water will water the tree too. Plus the tree would offer shelter for the ducks from hawks as well as shade.
I have some exciting news that is in the works and I can not wait to share! It is happening on Friday hopefully so I can’t spill the beans yet but I am literally so excited that I can’t wait to tell people!!!
Today has been absolutely GORGEOUS weather! After nearly a month with snow and rain falling most of the month, it is about time we get some good weather! Although the ducks do miss the layer of ice on their pool in the morning that I would break up for them to eat. Lol But they do love the warmth too. We can’t have both right? Personally I prefer the sunshine to the snow and I think they do too.
Normally they are busy and moving around almost constantly and there is always something for me to write about. Yet today, they were just laying there enjoying the warm weather. I felt disappointed because I didn’t know what to write about. Then it hit me!
They are still doing something while laying there! They are enjoying themselves and basking in the sunshine. We haven’t had such nice weather in awhile so I guess they felt it is important to enjoy it. They looked incredibly content. They even kept laying out back when the sun went lower in the sky and the pen was in the shade of the duck house. Even in the shade it felt warm.
I enjoyed watching them for awhile. They were not all puffed up because they were cold or holding their feet up like a flamingo to warm their poor feet. There is something about ducks that makes you smile just looking at them. 😀 They brighten every day.
This picture is almost a where’s waldo type photo bc they blend in so well! But all 14 ducks are in the photo!
Today I was able to change the smaller pool that doesn’t have a drain because the hose was at least thawed out so I could fill the pool once it was empty. Yay! But changing the smaller pool means dumping the dirty water. The silly ducks have been eating the ice chunks so the level of water has really gone down a lot. There wasn’t much left in the pool so I just figured I would tip the whole thing instead of scooping out little bits of water at a time with a bucket. Well I guess the ducks are not used to that and I scared them pretty good. There was lots of wing flapping and ducks quacking complaints at me. I felt bad about scaring them like that.
I have no idea if this is a common thing or if this is another of my “special ducks” quirks. But if one of them gets scared by a loud noise or something like a pool being dumped, an egg literally pops out. It is almost always a soft-shelled egg though since it comes out early and hasn’t had time to form the hard shell yet. Personally if this is a common duck thing, why hasn’t a saying been made for it? Like “I got so scared that you scared the egg out of me” type thing. LOL Granted, we don’t lay eggs but it could still be a saying or figure of speech right?. lol I am not sure how it happens though. Maybe they tense up and just push it right out. Whatever the reason, I know that one of the 2 ducks laying eggs now is a duckling because of who laid the egg in front of me. I didn’t get a good look at who it was specifically because it happened so fast but it was for sure a duckling. I suppose I should really start calling them something else since they are not really ducklings anymore.
Today I noticed something amazing. Roxy, who is an adult, was in the pool with Emma who is a duckling. The adults and ducklings are like rival gangs in a way. LOL They were both in the pool and enjoying themselves. Neither one was trying to chase the other out of the pool to claim the pool as their territory. What was even better was that Charles was standing beside the pool and not chasing Roxy out either! He was still watching her I think. He was ready to jump in if she tried to chase Emma out.
Charles still doesn’t like me because I have now had to have a few chats with him but he is behaving much better as well. I think he is catching on that chasing the adults means he has to spend time with me when he doesn’t want to do. He sees me watching and he behaves. He may eventually come around and realize he likes me. George had a phase like Charles too when he was young. George likes me now. It only took like a year and a half but George came around. LOL
Later, Spike and Roxy were in the pool with 3 of the ducklings. That is even more impressive! So I have hope that they are on their way to being civil with each other which is wonderful. I am not expecting them to be BFFs but I would love it if they would not chase each other.
In the photo below, please excuse the muddy water in the pool. It has been cold and the drain is frozen again so we have to wait till it warms up in the next couple of days to change the pool. They like turning it to mud though before it is even finished being filled. LOL One thing I have learned with my ducks is that you can’t keep the pool clean very long. lol Probably the only way to have a clean pool with ducks is to not let the ducks in to the pool. LOL Although some have reportedly found ways to circulate the water without clogging stuff with feathers and mud which would be great. Some day I may figure it out when I have more time. The leaves are from the willows because we had very strong winds yesterday (gusts to 78km/hr!) The leaves literally went everywhere!
Martha is FINALLY molting! I feel bad I have been so busy with my cat that I didn’t notice till tonight that she obviously lost most of her wing feathers. Normally I would have noticed the moment that she lost her first few feathers. This probably happened either last night or this morning. So Martha can now look pretty with new feathers just like everyone else. 🙂
Martha got her name initially because even as a duckling, she was always seeming stressed about everything and everyone. If you moved a food dish, she got stressed. If things were out of place, she got really stressed. If the other ducklings were misbehaving, she got stressed and got them in line. She reminded me in a way of Martha in the bible always stressing about stuff and complaining about Mary not helping. At first I didn’t have another female so Martha was without her Mary. Funny thing is that Mary doesn’t quite remind me of Mary in the bible unless Mary in the bible was scrappy and enjoyed keeping everyone in line. LOL Mary is Martha’s #2 though. They both keep everyone in line. Even poor George follows. I think the girls let the boys think that the boys are in charge as long as the boys do what the girls want them to do. LOL
George does follow Martha everywhere as Martha and George are a bonded pair. I think Martha has George wrapped around her…. toe? Lol Sometimes they get grazing and get separated and Martha just has to quack and George is stressing where she is and runs to her. Martha decides where to go and George dutifully follows. If Martha wants food, George goes with her and eats too. Martha wants to go for a swim, George follows and swims too. If anyone tries to mess with Martha, George fights them off. George is her personal bodyguard I guess! They are so sweet together!
Today I have some AMAZING NEWS!!!! The egg strike is now OVER!! Someone laid an egg! I don’t know who did but I am almost positive it wasn’t George or Charles. 😉 LOL I am not sure who decided to cross the picket line and start giving eggs but I am glad that they did. I imagine the other ducks are not too happy with this duck currently as the other ducks now look bad because they are still not laying. Maybe it is the extra meal worms I have provided because one of their many demands was more treats. Lol They also demanded warmer weather but I can’t do much about that one. Let’s hope the snow stops for a while and we actually get some nice fall weather!
On the subject of my kitty, he went to the vet today and it turns out he broke his front leg and needed to have it amputated. This wasn’t the news I wanted to hear but I am grateful that I didn’t need to say goodbye to another one of my babies today. I imagine it will be a long recovery for him but I am told that cats do well with 3 legs. It wouldn’t hurt him to slow down a bit either. He is a little too adventurous and clumsy. It has always scared me how much and how high he climbs. He loves trees and I worry that he climbed up somewhere high and lost his footing and fell. I hope he will stay on the ground from now on.
Normally Roxy is the one stealing all of the meal worms out of my hand but tonight someone else was beating her to it! George decided I wasn’t so scary and actually gobbled them up before Roxy or anyone else! I tried to get Mary to take some because she is seriously getting close and considering it but still hesitant. With George and Roxy being so fast, and Mary being hesitant still, Mary didn’t get any from my hand. She was getting the meal worms I threw to her though. I threw a bunch to the other ducks too. But to see George eating out of my hand was so wonderful! Especially after a really hard day with my one cat getting seriously hurt. It’s going to mean another trip to the vet tomorrow. Hopefully this time I don’t get such a devastating prognosis as i did with Lucy. The vet is sure seeing a lot of me lately!
Roxy has the nickname of Foxy Roxy. She has earned this name for 2 reasons.
First, Roxy gets this name because she loves male companionship…. Maybe a little too much. Lol She is always flirting with the boys. One drake is never enough for her either. She gets the attention of any drake that she is around. Maybe because poor George just can’t keep up to her and she seeks out another companion to fill her needs. Lol George sometimes sees her in the pool and turns around and waddles away because he doesn’t feel in the mood. She can be quite flirtatious and demanding! This morning she snuck up on Charles and playfully nipped at his tail feathers. He was quite startled and he jumped so high in the air! Lol poor Charles.
The second reason Roxy gets the nickname is that she is sneaky when it comes to treats she loves. She gets right in there and steals them out of my hand before I can get them to anyone else. Lol tonight I was giving everyone meal worms and I try to throw them out on the ground so everyone gets some. The only problem is that sometimes she got to them before they even left my hand! I was pouring some in my hand and she was just gobbling them up as they came out. Lol Or I will have some in my hand and look up to check where I should throw them and I suddenly feel someone’s bill in my hand and the meal worms are gone. She practically inhaled them! Silly girl.
Roxy is probably the friendliest duck I have as well. She comes right up to me as soon as I sit down. Mainly to check what I have and whether it’s worth stealing. Lol Sometimes she nibbles on my fingers as well. This is partly due to the extra time I spent with her when she was in the sick pen to keep another duck company in the early months of the year. We got to know each other really well. She thankfully has never been sick yet.
There is one last funny trait to share about Roxy. She loves to roost like a chicken. Or at least She likes to try. She is able to fly better than any other duck I have. Most of my ducks can’t get more than a foot or two off the ground but Roxy can get higher. While in the shop, we really had to keep an eye on her while having her out. She could literally make it onto the counter that we have in there. She also knew that I kept the treats up there so that was extra motivation. Lol but she really likes to be up high. In the duck house, she regularly flies up on top of the nest boxes and sleeps up there. She definitely is different!
Roxy – June 2018
If this link works, it is a video I took earlier this year. She wags her tail in response to her name sometimes. It’s really cute. 😀
Roxy playing in the shop
My ducks are afraid of the dark. It’s true. I can’t recall how i figured it out initially but i discovered they are much calmer at night with a night light. I don’t know why and whether my ducks are strange but they are what they are right? So I obviously gave them a night light. 😀
Recently I came across a night light in the shape of a duck. It made me laugh and i knew it was perfect for the duck house. I figured I would wait though with using it until the other night light burned out which it finally has. I am probably much more excited about this night light than they will be! Lol
Tonight is their first night with their new duck night light! I think it looks cute although it may not be as bright as their old one and it’s essentially a glowing duck. Lol I hope they are not too upset when I turn off the main light tonight because it will be different than they are used to and my ducks do not like change.
I keep everything with my ducks very much the same which has its drawbacks. They get used to routine and love routine and switching things can make them quite upset. They even know when it’s bed time. So if you want to try to put them to bed early, good luck! They will flat out refuse to go into their house! Even wearing a different jacket will freak them out. Last year I got a new winter coat and wore it outside. They acted like an alien walked into their pen!They pretty much tried to run straight through the wall! I have heard that ducks love routine and my ducks certainly fit that idea but i am not sure if all ducks are the same. Anyways here is a photo of their cute new night light. I hope they learn to accept it!