Monday: Duck report

June 4, 2018 • 2:30 pm

If you don’t want to see duck photos, just skip this post. I’ve become, I suppose, like those parents who pull out their wallets at the least provocation to bore you with pictures of their kids. It just happens that my kids are of the species Anas platyrhynchos.

Here’s one meal’s worth of duck food. Human babies get a jar of Gerber’s Meat Puree; my kids get a four-course banquet. From upper left clockwise: Cheerios (not much eaten now), waterfowl starter pellets (Honey likes these, too), Tasty Mealworms, and defrosted frozen corn.

Yes, there are still eight. Can I get them all to fledge?

Honey eating the pellets (I suppose I should get her some Mature Duck Food):

The usual feeding frenzy of the brood:

And a duckling who’s dipped its beak. Their down has changed to spiky plumage:

Postprandial bathtime: Shot 1

Postprandial bathtime, shot 2: two ducklings have just violently submerged themselves (splashes), while one is coming up:

Honey does some pretty violent ablutions, too. She can swim a long way totally submerged, and also flaps her wings to dry them. The ducklings have started flapping their tiny wings as well:

Showing them how to groom:

And the proud mom:


33 thoughts on “Monday: Duck report

  1. probably starter grower duck food is fine for Honey whereas the opposite might not be true. Sometimes food for infants & young has added ingredients that are not required for adults but do them no harm. Compare label ingredients? Or ask feed store?

    They are all so beautiful!

  2. Bloody marvellous – Honey Mum perched on the concrete rim keeping her beady eyes on the ‘lings.

  3. I admire what you are doing for your ducks and ducklings but I worry they may never learn to feed themselves.

    1. Jerry has sent plenty of pics of them foraging. They’re obviously eating when he’s not there.

      Honey had ten ducklings, and it looks like she’ll fledge eight of them. (It might have been ten if the water level was higher.) I think Jerry’s supplementary feeding means she is able to fledge most of her brood and they get a better start in life. It doesn’t mean that they’re not learning to eat for themselves.

      And I hardly think 8 ducklings becoming ducks instead of 2-3 is going to screw up the natural balance.

    2. I have bird feeders for the wild birds in my area, as do lots of other people.

      The insectivores still eat mostly insects, and the seed eaters still eat seeds from other plants. I don’t think I’ve damaged the ecosystem one bit.


    1. Because I thought the idea is the stone brick rings were too high for them to get out, so the facilities people increased the pond water level

  4. Follow the leader. Out walking this morning and saw three different groups all at various stages and numbers. Very good to see.

  5. You sed: “TASTY Mealworms” (emphasis added)

    Oh? And how, pray tell, do you know that?

    Is that a (shudder) FAITH BASED statement?

    If so, for shame.

      1. Yes, we know that pigs just love slop by watching them go for it. It’s not on the menu at Denny’s.

  6. Even ducks need a nice Jewish mother, Jerry. Make sure they put on their galoshes if it rains. 🙂

  7. If all eight survive to fledge, you and your Anas feeding cohorts deserve some credit, but by all accounts Honey appears to be a superb mother.

  8. Thanks for not feeding them white bread like many people erroneously do. Another inexpensive option is to buy one of those big bags of “Chicken Scratch” or “Hen Scratch” at your local feed outlet.

  9. I love the duck reports, and please don’t apologise to the naysayers for posting them!

    This is your website, you can post what you want, and those who are making criticisms are the ones with the problem! Who the fu€k do they think they are to tell you what you can and can’t do, or to try and make you feel bad for something good? As busterggi said above, they’re beneath contempt. Screw them. /rant

    I think most of us can recognize who is the decent, worthwhile person here. Yes, Jerry, of course I mean you!

  10. OK Jerry – I think you have finally gone a bit overboard. “Can I get them all to fledge?” Just pushing Honey out of the way. A helicopter Jewish grandmother. Have you already decided which of the ducklings will be doctors, dentists and lawyers?

      1. Just trying to make sure that all this praise does not go to your head. You have to keep your feet firmly on the ground to keep up the feedings.

  11. Nothing overboard about it…fun to watch the process, and really cool you are engaged and enjoying all aspects. What’s the harm in that? None.

    Now if you start doing a Honey Dialog, I might get worried. 😉

  12. What adorable photos! And the captions are so apt. These posts always bring a bit of cheer into my day.

  13. Have you begun to anthropomorphize the babies yet? Maybe recognize particular personality traits or behavioral inclinations that distinguish one from another? And have you begun to name the ducklings yet, based on their looks or how they relate to each other and their world at large? And do you find yourself drawn to particular ones…which leads to the jackpot question…which one is Your Favorite?

  14. Seeing the ducklings everyday is fun and soothing. I would miss the photos even knowing eventually they will stop for this year.

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