We were “gifted” two baby ducks this spring. Of course, we picked the two most active ducklings of the bunch. Bennie and Jett came to live with us when they were just days old. Tiny little birds with a voracious appetite. We instantly fell in love which made frequent feedings and box cleaning all worth it.
They grew very fast and soon were spending their days outside listening to all the new noises and seeing all the new sites. They learned how to get in and out of their swimming pool and took long naps under the apple tree. Bennie, a Peking duck, lost all the baby yellow feathers and turned white. Jett, a wood duck with black, brown and white markings grew beautiful patterned feathers and some colored blue-green.
Ducks are very different than chicken. I can sneak up on a sleeping duck – never with the chickens. Ducks fall asleep floating on the water. Who knew? The chickens watch the ducks in the pool and look at them like they are crazy. The chickens fight over food while the ducks look at them like they are crazy. The ducks are always together and snuggle often. The chickens – not so much.
The funniest thing about the ducks is their quack. Jett has a very soft voice which is hard to describe. It sounds more like a flute than any kind of quacking. She went from peeping to flute noises. I remember the first time Bennie made a noise other than “Peep”. It was more of a honking noise and we thought something was wrong. Soon we realized this was Bennie’s quack. This was the most obvious way to tell Bennie is a girl. Male Peking ducks have a curled feather on their tail, and a slightly different shaped bill. They also lose their ability to vocalize. Female ducks develop a loud quack. That’s an understatement. I think everyone in our neighborhood can hear Bennie quack. She usually only does it when she wants something. Like food. She won’t stop until she gets what she wants. QUACK!
QUACK, QUACK! I love the ducks. They make me laugh everyday. Bennie is noisy – but that’s what makes her who she is. She’s a little bossy too. I can’t wait until she lays her first egg. Judging by the noises the chickens make when they lay eggs, Bennie’s first experience will be at the very least LOUD!