This little tale got a few giggles on social media so I decided to keep it here for posterity. The arrival of Bella & Rico, two call ducks who came to live at Bumblebarn in September. These two lovely young ducks had been born and raised in the garden of an animal loving family who are good friends of ours, so I was keen to ensure they were looked after equally as well living at ours. This is what happened...
So they arrived and were placed delicately in the alpaca field, next to the pond the boys have spent all summer digging, and the house we've lovingly cleaned and prepared. They waddled right up to the stock fence and... just... squished through the holes and waddled off 😳
Sooo... Rico got chased by a horse and promptly turned around, squished himself back through the fence and fell, literally fell, into the pond 🤦♀️
Bella legged it, quacking as she went like one of those pull along toys, into the other alpaca field, where she scared the 💩 out of the three boys by running under their noses and then she hid among the hay bales, from where I retrieved her and then deposited her in the pond with her mate.
They both hid in the corner for some time.
Presently, the children who raised them scooped them out and put them in their new duck house. They sat very still.
Their old owners left, and I rigged some chicken wire around the duck house and pond to keep them from escaping while they settled in. I had thought they would be too large to escape through the gaps in the stock fence but I was very wrong!
Once the area had been secured (or so I thought...) I went to fetch a ramp to ensure they could definitely get in and out of the pond ok. I was gone 2 minutes. I arrived back, stuck my head in the duck house to take a photo of the new arrivals and THEY WERE GONE!
I searched all around the now very restricted pen, no ducks. I checked the pins in case they had... drowned?! Nope. I looked in the wider alpaca field, no ducks. I looked in the chicken and horse fields, no ducks.
I was starting to panic when I caught sight of the little waddly f*****s - they'd just reached the top of the field and were headed for the road 😱
I legged it.
In my crocs.
They'd disappeared into the brambles separating the field from the road by the time I arrived, I dived right, through the thinnest part of hedge, and surprised a car full of arriving guests 🤦♀️ because that's a normal way to be greeted when you arrive at a glamping site?! By a mad lady leaping through a hedge?!
I didn't even talk to them, they'd paused and were giving me uncertain looks, I decided it better to catch the ducks first and explain later, so I spun on a heel and careered towards the road.
I found the quacky f*****s tunnelling their way through brambles like the chickens in Chicken Run, or possibly Escape from Alcatraz. I managed to reach in up to my shoulder and snag the male, which upset the female terribly and she barrelled out towards us. By some stroke of luck the road was deserted so no one got to witness me trying to pick up a duck while also holding a duck, which is surprisingly difficult.
With my two precious escapees firmly clamped to my chest I returned through the hedge (yes I am covered in cuts thank you for your concern. The ducks are fine.) and proceeded down to the campsite to find my guests and apologise 🙈
The ducks then got corralled in the chicken run, where the chicken wire is stapled to ground bars (I can only assume they simply pushed under all my careful fencing 🙄) and the chickens got turfed out, one by one unceremoniously chucked (gently) over the fence into the alpaca field.
The ducks now have 2 inches of water in a tray, instead of a carefully hand dug pond, and the chickens look pi$$ed off, to say the least.
I am going to find wine, then rock in a corner repeating "I love animals I love animals" while slurping from the bottle.
They're so cute though. I've always wanted ducks.
So you'll be pleased to know that it's been over 2 months now and Bella and Rico have NOT attempted another daring escape, thank goodness! They've also since been joined by two runner ducks called Frank and Dave, and the four of them all live very harmoniously together.