Broody Duck: When a hen (female duck) wants to hatch eggs and raise ducklings.
I have been trying to prevent the ducks from going broody till it would warm up a little more but I guess the ducks had other plans. Despite my best efforts to delay it, it happened. Lucy (Silver Appleyard x) decided last week that she would start sitting permanently on one single egg because she probably knew that was all she was going to manage to keep. I (the mean human) kept stealing them every day so she wasn’t able to accumulate any. I had hoped that she wouldn’t get truly broody then. But once they start sitting, they stop laying, so it was no sense trying to prevent it any further. Lucy won out. I decided to give her two more eggs that Martha had laid to make it worth it because I figured if she was going to sit for a month, she might as well have more than one. So she got three eggs and a ball (that she kept pushing into the nest box) as well. This ball was supposed to be a toy but the ducks decided they wanted to use it as an egg. No matter how many times I threw it out of the nest box, it always ended up back in the nest box. The ducks are little rascals and I love them for it. 🙂
I had hoped she wouldn’t give anyone (Martha) any ideas. Martha has also been trying to go Broody so I didn’t need her getting encouraged. But I figured why fight it and gave in. Martha (a Welsh Harlequin that I raised from a duckling) has now accumulated 2 eggs as of this morning and not sitting permanently yet. It is kind of cute because she buries them to hide them from the mean human who comes to steal eggs every morning. Lol
Yesterday we had to separate the pen into two bc George (my male Welsh Harlequin) is chasing and attacking Lucy so we had to do something. We decided to split my 4 Ducks into 2 groups. Martha and Lucy in the house where they have nests and George and Mary (my other silver appleyard x) on the other side in the small house. Martha and George grew up together as 2 of my 5 ducklings I raised and are bonded. Since they are bonded, they are pining for each other but her nest is behind Lucy’s nest and George can’t have access to Lucy. So George and Martha will have to get used to seeing each other through a fence for now. I hope I am doing the right thing. One lesson I have learned is that you often have to make a decision without being sure it is the right one. There isn’t always a clear right answer and you can’t just sit and do nothing so you have to decide and hope it is the right call. If it isn’t, you learn from it and don’t make the same decision next time. Anyways, Martha and George will have to play star-crossed lovers for a while. Luckily for them though, the distance isn’t that far. 🙂
So now you are up to date. 🙂 With any luck, by the end of April, I should have more baby ducklings. 🙂 I will hopefully be able to keep sharing updates each day or two. Below is a photo of Lucy’s nest. I took the photo when she stepped off the nest momentarily. 🙂 the ball was supposed to be a toy for them to play with but instead has been used as an egg to sit on. I also share photos of all of my ducks on Instagram if you want to check those out. 🙂