Friday, 22 August 2008

Ducks gone?

This week started with all three remaining chicks in the quad. In fact, in a rare display of (unphotographed) tolerance, I saw all three bobbing around in their water trough together.

However, after Tuesday, there's been no sign of the two older chicks, and bar what sounded like the Runner on Thursday, there's been no sign of him/her since Wednesday. There has been a lot of guttering action in the quad this week, but I would still expect to have seen the chicks at some point most days.

Death or departure then?

Whoops - stop the press! I've just clocked the Runner in the small pond. Looking a bit lonely, but otherwise appearing fine. That's a bit of a relief since, unlike the two older chicks, I didn't think that the Runner was able to leave the quad under his/her own steam, so was beginning to think the worst.

Never get attached enough to animals that you name them. That appears to be the main lesson to draw from life (= death) in the quad.

Anyway, I'll try to snap off a photograph of the Runner before I depart today. Assuming he/she hangs around long enough. The Runner isn't quite as active now that his/her mother's upped sticks and left.


Anonymous said...

Wait a minute...

I just thought of something. Didn't you used to -hate- birds?


Plumbago said...

"Hate" is a strong word, but I used to find their abundance in the biological literature very tedious (and couldn't believe what Morton and his crew got up to in Yosemite when we visited them). That, and they're sufficiently ubiquitous to be unexciting to catch a glimpse of (meanwhile, the ones that aren't ubiquitous look just like the ones that are!). Mammals just show far more variety in form and behaviour. Let alone reptiles, which are so rare in Britain that I *always* find them fascinating.

I still don't find birds interesting, but seeing the antics of the quad ducks and watching them grow up (or, more commonly, not grow up and simply disappear) has been very entertaining. That may, in part, have to do with what I do in my office, but they have been quite engaging summer entertainment.