Sunday, 22 May 2011

And Then There Were Five...

Some sad news.  As the title of my blog suggests, there are an awful lot of chickens wandering about out there, but you may not know we also have six ducks.  They are Indian Runner Ducks and we have raised them from eggs into tiny youngsters into fully fledged ducks, who are sweet and innocent and we adore them. 
We put all the animals away at night, ducks in one pen and chickens in another.  The chickens arrive in dribs and drabs, for a bit of tea and then  find their favourite slot on a perch or in a nesting box, but the ducks stick together like glue and go everywhere together.
So when Mr O came in from work on Tuesday night and announced he'd put the ducks away for the night but that there were only five, alarm bells started ringing instantly.  We went straight back out and began to search.  I expected to find her floundering about near the pond, with some sort of injury, but what we eventually stumbled upon was much, much worse. 
The fox spotted us just before we spotted him and rapidly abandoned his meal.  Tessa chased him as far as the boundary wall and then I yelled at her to come back.  The last thing I needed was for her to go running into the road.  What we had to deal with was plenty.  I'll spare you the gory detail, but suffice it to say, the fox had no intention of taking the duck anywhere with him, but she was thoroughly dead. 
We just stood there dumb with shock.  Now, I have always had it in mind that this would be a swearword free blog, so a lot of the conversation that took place after the discovery is pretty unprintable.  Let's just say that if the fox comes back I won't be responsible for my actions. 
I have always been pro hunting and never liked foxes, but part of me can't help admiring their beauty, but when you see the extent of their capabilities at close hand, suddenly you understand how vile they actually are. 
I was in such shock and a state of anger that I didn't actually cry until the next day as I was putting them away.  They are such sweet, innocent animals, and they trust us implicitly, I feel I've really let them down.  Maybe if I'd put them away earlier this wouldn't have happened, but it probably can't be helped. 
Goodbye little duck, we loved you...


  1. You shouldn’t feel like you let your duck down, I don’t think that there was anything to be done on your part. Somebody I know uses electric fencing and they say it works so maybe you could put up an electric fence, and that might keep the fox away, but I have never had fox problems so I don’t know much about it all, but I am very sorry about your duck.

  2. So sorry about your sweet little friend. Unfortunately, nature can be really cruel to even the innocent. Don't know much about keeping foxes away, I fear, but don't blame yourself. It could have happened any time.

  3. Sorry to hear about your duck, how awful for you. Echoing the above comments, don't blame yourself, it wasn't your fault. M x

  4. Oh Jane Im so sorry about your duck, and unfortunately foxes will take any chances that are around so its not totally your fault, its obviously been watching for awhile and then took it while he could. With hugs Shirleyxxx

  5. So sorry to hear about your ducks. I too think foxes are beautiful animals but knowing their nature doesn't make me fond of them.
    Our problem this year has been with snakes and though I hate to kill animals I can't live with them around the garden or pool.


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