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By lily2



It all began with a bit of hanky-panky down at the lake…..

Very soon it became obvious that we needed to set about making a nursery for our forthcoming happy event. I found the perfect spot, penthouse in a high-rise conifer hedge with panoramic views of the rooftops and gardens and a flat top heli-pad for smooth landings.

Of course HE didn’t like it, said 15’ was too high up for the babies to jump and 3/4 mile from water as the duck flies is too far but I don’t care, trivialities, what do men know, I love it and just have to have it!

Anyway I kept a low profile getting the nest ready, he didn’t help at all, just sat on a nearby roof sulking. He said he was keeping lookout but looked like an excuse just to sit around to me……..

He kept moaning he was bored so he tried out another nearby roof…….

and another………

Well eventually he decided he’d had enough and did a runner (flier?) back to the lake, no doubt ‘swanning’ around with his mates again……

Now I’m an abandoned Mum-to-be and I think maybe he WAS right. this IS a very long way up and a bit lonely, maybe I should have stayed at the lake after all.

I now have eight babies and five of them have made a jump for it. First of all they were threatened by a cat and after a while by 2 humans. None of them can see me but I’m so proud of my babies – they really gave those humans the runaround, separating and regrouping in all the most awkward places like this………

(Note from ‘Human’:- Don’t look for the ducklings – this was taken later, I was too busy chasing them at the time!)

but in the end they got caught and put in a box and now I don’t know where they are……

It soon got dark so the rest of us stayed put but now it’s next day and we’ve all made it down to the ground. Well, after lots more crawling around by the humans in here………..

we got caught eventually and put in a box too and ended up in a place called ‘the vets’ where…OH JOY…there are my other babies. Apparently they spent some time under something called a heat lamp and are now rather attached to the Vet. I’M their mother – not him!!!

We all spent the night in a horrible cage , don’t like this place at all, lots of strange noises. Then I got banged up in a box again, I can see my babies in another one and we seem to be in something noisy and moving. HELP! I’m frightened!

What’s this? I know this place… WOW… it’s the lake where I first got into this mess!!

The boxes are open, come on you lot, follow me, let’s make a break for it and take to water…….

Some of the other residents don’t look too friendly, watch out for that coot kids…….

Maybe this is why……..she has babies too

Well, now it’s 3 days later and I don’t know what’s going on but my babies keep disappearing when I’m not looking. I only have 2 left now…….

Oh well I suppose 2 babies are easier to look after than 8 but I don’t think I’m really cut out for this motherhood lark. Maybe I’ll let him choose the site for the nest IF there is a next time!

Can’t wait till I can go off on my own again and join the others at the spa…….

_________________________ Footnote from the humans:

We would have loved them to stay in the garden but there were just too many cats around, not least our own, Daisy. All this happened last year and we were both sorry and relieved that they didn’t come back this year. We sought advice and did our best for them but sadly we don’t think any survived. We were subsequently told that there were pike in the lake who grab the ducklings by the feet whilst swimming and very few ducklings survived there last year. Apparently the pike have now been removed.

I wish the photos had been of better quality and content but I was too intent on making sure the ducklings were OK and I didn’t know about GOY then, if I had I would have thought ‘hhmmm…’!!

More blog posts by lily2

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Well done for trying, wild ducklings are tough little things to deal with, nature seems that has it in for them from the start - (hence the large broods) , our own hand reared much worried over Beaky decided to do a bunk at the first opportunity and now we dont know if s/he is still alive or not - but better off in the wild I think.

15 Jul, 2009


Lots of interesting photos, and you did everything you could to help the ducklings...
Maybe now that the pike have gone, the duck population on the lake will build up again...

15 Jul, 2009


What a lovely blog.

15 Jul, 2009


Thank you for your comments. Yes, ducklings do seem to be very vulnerable like blue tits who also have very large broods. I haven't seen many ducklings at all down at the lake this year although there are a lot of juvenile males now (presumably this years babies Ducky?) so maybe they were all born quite early on. It was a lovely experience having them in the garden.
Sorry to hear Beaky never came back Ducky, it's best to think she made it and is happily living in the wild thanks to you

17 Jul, 2009


I loved that blog Lily.

20 Jul, 2009


So glad you enjoyed it Bob, I had fun compiling it too and enjoyed having the ducks around. Thanks for the PM - it's hard to keep up with all that's going on here even with full access to a computer.

21 Jul, 2009


Love your duck blog!
Perhaps you can advise on our poor lonely 'Barbarie' (Muscovy). He turned up here about a year ago, from nowhere and started living in our barn. He is definitely love-lorn and has spent the last year pursuing the geese with amorous intent. (And even molesting unfortunate moorhens in the pond!)
I've tried hard to get him some female duck company, and we were sold some 'mulards' by an unscrupulous duck dealer, who swore they'd be good for breeding, but which we discover are a sterile breed for fattening and then eating!
So 'Donald' (so original!) is still lonely and we can't seem to find any barbary females for him.
The mulards have settled in well on our pond in a floating duck house I constructed for them, but 'Donald' does not want to have anything to do with them, and much prefers the geese.
We are currently incubating some Indian runner eggs given to us by one of our 'gite' guests, but I suspect 'Donald' will find these even less appealing if they hatch at the end of the month.
Ducks are a constant source of amusement. I hope you get a replacement for 'Beaky'.

20 Aug, 2009


GREAT BLOG LILY, ducks really don't seem the most intelligent of creatures do they? Still you did your best and perhaps she knew about the pike, so not so stupid :-) Some octogenarian friends friends of ours had a tiny oval pond, shallow and about 30"x20" just for a little wild life. It was in the centre of the lawn, their garden backed onto a small wood. They were amazed and thrilled to find two ducks take up residence! The novelty wore off after a few weeks as the ducks made such a mess of their garden and they eventually shooed them off. Our lovely friends have since died or I could have down loaded the photos they took in case no-one believed them:-))

31 Aug, 2009


Glad you liked it Bornagain. Yes that thought did cross my mind too that maybe that's why they didn't choose to stay at the lake. To be honest I don't really know where they came from but that is the nearest place. Sometimes animals know more than we do but it WAS rather high up! Like with your friends, sometimes the reality of things is not so sweet as the messy facts and I have heard ducks can cause havoc in a garden.
(PS Just got 2 emails....whooopeee!!)

31 Aug, 2009



31 Aug, 2009


I didn't see this Lily. I'm glad the fish have now gone. I hope there'll be more ducklings next year ( but not in your garden ) :o)

4 Mar, 2010

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