Friend Duck

All of this talk about ducks yesterday got me to thinking about our new addition – she arrived last weekend. We got a call from a gentleman whose grandkids had given he and his wife two ducklings for Easter earlier this year, and they were looking for a home for the one that remained. (A raccoon got one of the ducklings, those nasty bandits!)

She is a beautiful Pekin hen who we have called “Friend Duck” in honor of a story from when I was a little girl. We would sometimes vacation in a small town in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in the summertime, on a lake with some rental cottages. When I was about our son’s age (kindergarten) – I liked to go into the lake each day and feed the ducks bread, crackers, etc. I became convinced that the same mallard drake was coming closer and closer to me each day, and I announced that I had a “Friend Duck.” My mom and aunt kept a styrofoam cup labeled with his name up on the windowsill in the kitchen area of the cabin, and any bread type scraps would get placed in it for me to feed him.

When our new duck arrived, we found out that she likes to eat Cheerios right out of your hand, and even has a little ritual of quacking and pointing her head to indicate she would like some. Also, she came with a mirror, because she was so fond of looking at herself in it. She’s got quite a little personality, and so she has become the new “Friend Duck.”

She wasn’t really sure about the other ducks at first, but has taken to being part of a flock with great enthusiasm. In fact, she really doesn’t look in the mirror much anymore; we think she probably thought it was another duck she was visiting with in the past, and now that she knows ducks are three-dimensional, that “flat-screen” friend has lost its charm.

She’s also not asking us for Cheerios any longer, but she does make the request of her fellow ducks, who kind of look at her like she’s crazy. I try and try to offer her some, but she is stubborn and just keeps demanding them from the ducks. The bright side, however, is that our Muscovy pair have become more tame, and they will now both eat the cereal right out of my hand. So there is that!

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