Sunday, March 14, 2010

Well, goodbye ducks

When I went out this morning to check on all our animals, I knew immediately something was amiss when I didn't hear the low "quack quack" sound that my sweet slug eating friends make every time I come near.

Some asshole animal killed them. Found a little opening in my haphazard chicken wire covering and just wrang their necks. Took off with a little bit of breastmeat from the drake, but otherwise just left them whole.

I want to think it was a coyote. But I don't think a coyote would just leave them there. It seems that it would take off with the whole thing. And seems like one of our outdoor cats would have been a more likely target for a coyote. But what do I know.

The other option is that it could have been one of the neighbor's dogs (my dogs, especially my big one, will herd them a bit but otherwise could care less). One dog in particular has killed two of our chickens. We know this because Ed saw the dog leaving our property when they were killed. And that dog just killed the two birds rather than eating them. Unfortunately  it seems that she is the likely culprit.

The bummer is that the neighbor's know that their dog goes after their neighbors' poultry. At first I didn't feel upset when the chickens were killed, as they did warn us that their dog will go after poultry if she knows they are there. And we let our hens out to free range, so it was kind  of our fault as well. And I know dogs have the instinct to do that kind of stuff so I'm understanding. And they were very apologetic when it happened and had been keeping their dog in a crate.

But these were my only pair of these cool animals. They were quiet, shy little creatures. And anytime I threw one of the huuuge slugs in their pen they gobbled it up like candy.

I do have some hatching eggs left, so I will try to hatch them.

So what do I do about the dog? Ask the neighbors if their dog came home last night with blood dripping out of its mouth? Haha. Seriously, though, I feel that I should mention something as I don't want to seem permissive yet I don't want to blame their dog without knowing if it was actually her.

Ugh. I absolutely hate neighbor issues.


Laura said...

Oh I'm so sorry about the ducks. I want to yell. I'm mad. Now you know why I live where I do. No fricking neighbor issues. God, here we go again.

Maybe you guys need to fence the place.

I'm sad for your ducks. And for you losing them.



Laura said...

Very sorry to hear about your ducks. I'd like to have seen the bodies and the hole in the pen, but wondered if you've considered a weasel as the culprit. They are known for "bloodlust" and eating little of what they kill.

We currently have about 29 ducks (our old original female just died: not sure why). Laura has talked about eating some, but read that after about 10 weeks they're not very good. We'd be very happy to give you a couple (or a half dozen). Just let us know. I'm hoping to make a quick trip out that way sometime over the next month or so and could bring them to you.


Vegetable Garden Cook said...

Well I was particularly fond of this breed. I just hope I can get a male and female again for myself. But many folks are waiting for my ducklings to hatch and will pay me $4/each. I have a batch of eggs in the garage that I can put in the incubator when everyone has hatched.

Are there actually weasles in this area?

Anonymous said...

Hi Amy Dear~~ Two words: A FENCE! I'm afraid you'll always have issues with your inconsiderate neighbors until you get a formidable, clearly defined barrier. Fences make the best neighbors. I share your grief.