Saturday, 4 June 2011

Duck psychology

Mama duck took off and left a couple of weeks ago. She’d been going away on trips, getting the ducklings used to being alone and more independent. (They weren’t, of course. Still kept begging for bread and annoying the rabbit.) Still, they look like ducks now. Big. Fat. And, mostly, winged.  They are trying frantically to fly, propelling themselves out of the pond before collapsing beak first onto the grass.  Much flapping of wings but no lift-off – as yet.

Today, Mama returned – with 7 tiny ducklings. They look as if they’ve just crept out of their eggshells, tiny balls of fur stumbling around.

The original 4 are REALLY annoyed. The look of disdain on their faces said it all, so we thought, until Boss Duck (aka Apple) had a go at the ducklings. Mama didn’t react much, apart from poking her beak at Boss. No dramatics, fights or other tantrums.

I wish I understood duck psychology.

Now they’re all hunkered down within a few feet of each other:

4 adolescents, 1 adult, 7 miniature ducklings and 1 rabbit.  Sounds almost like the chorus of Tom Lehrer’s hunting song.

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