Monday, March 31, 2008

Newest Additions To Beck's Bounty

Below: The children were down near the pond yesterday and found this little guy, now named Herman. He is a Slider turtle, and is sooooo tiny. After 20+ photos, with and without the flash, these are the clearest photos I could get of him.

There is a quarter and a ruler in 2 of the photos to show his TINY size. He was found on the road, with 2 siblings who we think were victims of vehicular homicide and another sibling that was dead without apparent injury. So, we thought perhaps Herman might do better with a full tummy and a bit of rest -- and now he is in an aquarium in our school room. His aquarium has pond water in it, along with a flat rock for basking, and some pond plants too so it hopefully feels like home to him. We will watch him for a few days, and then will put him back into the wild. So far he is eating well and seems happy swimming and basking.

APRIL 3rd UPDATE: Herman was released this morning at the edge of the pond where he came from. He swam away happily.

Below: Our next additions are 6 Pekin ducklings who arrived the day before Easter. They are all cute and yellow, and are very closely sized, so we have been unable to name them so far. That will take some time ....

(Above: Cherub 1 cleaning the duck box - not a fun job except that the duckings are so enjoyable to hold.)

The care and keeping of ducks --- well, they are MESSY, and if you would mind contant PEEP PEEP PEEPing, then they are noisy too. We do not mind the PEEPing. We change their box liner (a HUGE blue rubbermaid crate lined with newspaper) 2-3x per day so that helps keep the mess to a minimum. We think we have 2 drakes in the bunch, but time will tell if we are correct. They are so funny to watch -- tilting their little heads to watch us as we approach, peeping, chasing one another round and round the box, splashing in their waterer as they drink AND dip their feet in .... it has been quite funny ... good wholesome entertainment.

In a few weeks, we hope to release them on the pond .... once they have their adult feathers of course. We also hope that they will stay on the pond because they will go straight from the "box" they are being raised in to the pond --- so it will hopefully be a nice new permenant home. It will be so nice to watch them from our windows and during walks.

We will post an update on the Duck-Project Progress in a few weeks ....


keri said...

Peeping, messy ducklings in the MUST have a kind heart for animals!

School for Us said...

How fun! My daughter really wants a duckling, but we don't live on a pond. I'm not sure I'd like the mess too much, either. :-)