So we lost Maddie and Mabel a couple of weeks ago. Mabel died first in her sleep – since her day was ordinary and she did all her favorite things, I’m assuming it was just old age.
Maddie followed a week later, from what I am sure was a broken heart. They were tightly bonded and you could watch Maddie just slowly slip away. Again, she was the same age as Mabel, I’m assuming, so it wasn’t surprising.
They were slowing down considerably over the summer, nesting more than running around the yard. But they still chased bugs every morning, enjoyed their pools, and got feisty when the duckteens got out of line.
I did bring Penelope (rest in peace sweet thing) and Nick and Nora into the flock hoping that when and if one of the older ducks died, the remaining duck would have company. It was a long shot…
I knew Maddie and Mabel were slowing down, we didn’t really know how old they were when we rescued them, and healthy ducks only live from 5-8 years. Mabel had the most difficult time in the wild and probably only had a day or two left in her when we brought her home. It took a while for both to recuperate and Mabel’s health always seemed vulnerable. But they had a great life here and enjoyed being the official yard ducks. Gave us a lot of eggs and ate their weight in bugs, for sure.
They brought great joy to the yard and it was soooo nice to have ducks again after years without. I am grateful Nick and Nora are around to take up the mantle of official yard ducks. They seem up to the task.
x-posted at Annie DeMoranville
All winter I worry about making sure Maddie and Mabel have warm, dry places to hangout. I shovel out areas, I make them stay in their coop until I believe the temperature is sufficient (usually around 27 degrees F). I make sure they are tucked in at night before things get frigid.
So what do I see from my window today, both of them snuggled into a snow bank.
Maddie promptly ran away when I went to take a photo, but Mabel was too comfy to care.
Maddie and Mabel love snow. I have to shovel paths for them, so they’re not up to their eyeballs in snow, and then a patch under the bushes where they can warm their little feet. They are like little down coats, so a little snow is no deterrent to their job of patrolling and guarding the yard.
I snapped a few shots before the rain came. I’m sitting here watching them in the rain. It’s pure joy. They love the rain so very much.
I haven’t dyed eggs in years… but like many, I seem to have a lot of time on hands. So I’ve been doing quite a bit cookings. I’ll probably have a blizzard of posts this weekend.
I’m overrun with duck eggs, and I boiled up a dozen in the multi-pot/instant pot last week, but as you can see, still overrun. Three ducks, two to three eggs a day adds up quickly. So I decided to dye some. Continue reading
I had a request for some ducks. Here they are in all their feathered splendor.
Mabel wondering why I’m stalking her.
Maddie and Penelope unaware I’m coming for them next. Continue reading
Always fun when the ducks get fresh pool water. I could watch them all day.
Thought we could all use a bit of zen.
My ducks have fans. Friend of ducks, MomSense, knitted three beautiful scarves for my ducks, each with their own color.
It went about as well as I expected – they removed them within a minute:
Here’s Mabel taking hers off.
I think I’ll do one duck, one scarf and take a photo. It kind of stresses them out, but I bribed them with romaine lettuce and they forgave me.
There will be more…