Monday, September 19, 2016

Home.

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I know I write about the renegade ducks a lot.  I'm just fascinated by them I guess.  Two springs ago, Daisy and Donald Duck waddled into my life - escapees from their pen in the neighbor's yard.  Apparently the grass is greener on this side of the proverbial fence.  The ducks are fun to watch - I love seeing them waddle across the yard.  I love when they follow me when I am feeding the chickens or the cats and I love listening to their quacking conversations.  It was actually kind of a thrill having them around - kind of like being deemed duck-worthy.  Daisy and Donald stayed with us through that spring until one night after picking up my daughters from a sports practice, we saw a fox in the neighbor's yard.  And he had one of the ducks.  The four of us - my youngest son included - chased the fox away and rescued Daisy who was quite obviously stunned.  She went into the chicken coop where, I was sure, she would die.  Imagine my surprise when I came home from work the next day and Daisy was out and about.  Granted, she was missing feathers on her head and neck, but she was seemingly back to her old self.  And what about donald?  Well, he apparently decided the vacation was over and went back to less green pastures.
Daisy returned last spring, hatched ducklings, and took them all back home with her.
Daisy returned this spring, hatched ducklings, and then after the ducklings were nearly full-sized, left and went back home, leaving the ducks here.  But she's back now.  Back leading the pack of five 'babies' who are as large as she.  They make me laugh.  They become very talkative a couple of hours before sunset.  I don't know why but they do.  They walk around together as if they are attached with bungee cords.  If they run and fall, sometimes they have a hard time getting back on their ducky feet.  When they hear me open the back door to feed the cats, all six of the ducks come running.  They are as astute as my dogs.  They love cat food and hang out under the deck to catch any pieces that fall.

Right now they live with Clover and the goats.  I will need to rig something for them in the winter.  But in return, they will keep the goats' and Clover's water from freeing (or so I've read) and for that, I'd do nearly anything for the ducks.  One of the things I hate most in winter is breaking up the ice in the animal water buckets.

So the inhabitants of my little place on earth seem to wax and wane.  It is always interesting to see who has decided to call this place home.  One year it was a friendly rabbit who provided months of entertainment - I would be happy for him to come back on a permanent basis.  But like people, you can't make them stay where they don't want to be.

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