"It is well to remember that the entire population of the universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others." A.Holmes

Monday, June 22, 2009

Duckies, Fear Not!

Mama and Papa Duck. They are the sole survivors of not 1, but 2 coyote slaughters. They also mated, and nested a clutch of eggs that were preyed upon by raccoons and possums and coyotes. I took 2 of the eggs and had them brooded by my silkie hen, and those babies are still in the brooding shed. However, the ducklings I bought from a hatchery and raised up have graduated from the brooding pens to the pen by the pond. This is the pen near the pond where I train the ducks to pen themselves up at night, and thus , will hopefully keep this new flock safe from predators. The young ducks have been penned up with the older , wiser ducks for a week now and it is time to release them out into the world, Cedar Pond. Mama and papa Duck will show them the ropes of life around here for a duck....... Mama Duck is excited to be free, and she rushes out into the pond...but ducklings AND Papa Duck stay behind. Not too sure about this freedom. The world is a scary fearful place you know. "Fear imprisons; faith liberates; fear paralyzes; faith empowers; fear disheartens; faith encourages; fear sickens; faith heals; fear makes useless; faith makes serviceable." Harry E. Fosdick Quite awhile later, they tentatively venture out...not too far! "Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. The fearful are caught as often as the bold. " Helen Keller Then, they stand around in a clump of fear. All that water and fresh grass, yummy slugs and bugs to be had for the taking, but- they are afraid! "Fear, if allowed free rein, would reduce all of us to trembling shadows of men, ( ducks ?) for whom only death ( coyotes) could bring release." John M. Wilson Mama Duck comes quacking back from the pond where she had been bathing and swimming, quacking all along for them to join her. "Hey, you guys, come on! The water is fine, the bugs are plentiful.....what's keeping you ? " The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, yet notwithstanding go out to meet it. " Thucydides The ducklings follow Mama slowly down to the pond, in their little clump of fear. "Every tomorrow has 2 handles. We can take hold of it by the handle of anxiety or by the handle of faith." Unknown Mama jumps in the water and begins to splash with joy and ....it SCARED the ducklings! They ran ( waddled) fast as they could up the grassy lawn heading for their pen! Well, at least I know THEY know where to pen themselves up. Mama and Papa Duck took the lead and tried to head the ducklings back to the pond. As they would venture closer the ducklings would turn en-masse and head this-a-way....."Panic is a sudden desertion of us, and a going over to the enemy of our imagination." Chrisitan Nevell Bovee ...and that-a-way.... "Fear cannot touch me. It can only taunt me, it cannot take me, just tell me where to go. I can either follow, or stay in my bed. I can hold onto the things that I know." Christopher Rice Finally! The ducklings made their way , albeit , circuitously...to the pond's edge. "Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear." Ambrose Redmoon. The ducklings quacked amongst themselves a bit and decided to just sit on the edge awhile, because you know, the pond is a scary place! "Never fear shadows...they simply mean there's a light shining somewhere nearby." Unknown Mama and Papa Duck splashed, swam, and had a feast. The ducklings, not realizing Mama and Papa's wisdom and experience, and not trusting ME, who wants what is best for them and have provided a perfect duck home for them...2 days later...still choose to sit on the bank and watch ( fearfully ) as the older ducks take joy in Cedar Pond. "But if God so arrays the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow thrown into the furnace, will He not much more do so for you, O men of little faith....Therefore do not be anxious ( or fearful ) for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough troubles of its own." Matthew 6: 30 , 34

17 comments:

Mary said...

So fascinating. The sequence of events really tickled me. I hope all are just as happy as momma soon. Water fowl are so much entertainment. So interesting how they communicate. They can seem so simple, yet they are so smart and dedicated.

Wobegon Cottage said...

I am going to choose the handle of faith....One day at a time..love your ducks

Mildred said...

The sequence of photos is a bit like watching a tennis match...back and forth they go!!! I enjoyed the quotes too Kathy.

LindaSueBuhl said...

wonderful posting Kathy - goofy critters - I often wish I could speak whatever language my animals would truly understand and tell them - this stuff is GOOD for you and won't hurt at all - instead of wrestling with a goat to worm her or put fly powder on :::sigh:::: I always loved Dr. Doolittle and his talking to the animals. Poor silly ducks - how funny - my verification word is togoenow --to go now - ha!silly ducks even the computer wants you to have some fun

Leslie said...

What a fun thing that would be to watch. It was such a good idea to teach them to pen themselves at night. I wonder how long before they go in.

A. Joy said...

I like Mildred's comment about the photos being like a tennis match.
I thought those were funny to see in a row like that! I like the quote about shadows and that meaning there's a light nearby.

Jennifer said...

How funny. Loved the pictures, those ducks are just too cute! I am sure they will get used too the pond and everything soon. They sure stick together!

Farm Chick Paula said...

Bless their hearts... they just didn't want to go near thee water, did they?
I love that passage from Matthew- thanks for including it in this wonderful post, Kathy!

Thistle Cove Farm said...

LOVE the Helen Keller quote...with so much courage did she live her life! Animals have SO much to teach us, when we take the time to watch and learn. Your posts always remind me to stop, watch and learn...from you as well as my own farm. You and yours are still tucked into prayer.

Shellmo said...

I will always choose the handle of faith! Great post today! So glad you are able to protect those ducks - so cute to see them so bunched up together!

Abe Lincoln said...

Beautiful ducks and neat they can pen themselves up.

Coyotes and foxes have families and the things they used to hunt have been taken away from them, more or less, through development. So to keep from starving they seek places like you have that has something to eat. I know they will also go after fish in ponds people have for decoration.

You have a nice blog here. I will get back.

Abe Lincoln

Flower said...

You deserve an award for that story about your ducks!! It's fantastic and worth of notice!!
I know just how those little ducks feel!! There are diffult circumstance we must all get over and in time, they will!
..the cutest story ever!!

Shannon said...

Cute post! Poor little duckies. That little call duck is so cute with the rest of them.

KathyB. said...

Mary,Leslie, Jennifer,Farm Chick Paula... 3 days later, the ducklings still sit by pond's edge , watching mama and papa Duck.Poor ducklings.

Wobegon Cottage, one day at a time is all we have and I am determined to live that way too, each day has it's own troubles, but also it's own joys.

Mildred and Autumn, I thought it was like a tennis match too as I watched and photographed them, here they come, there they go....

LindaSue,my sentiments exactly, especially when trying to pen up the sheep so I can tend to them for their own good. I KNOW that is how God sees us too....

Thistle Cove, I know you watch your animals closely and enjoy them.Thank-you for your prayers too!

Shellmo,the ducks are fun to watch. They are very comical, and clumped like that it appears I have a brown blob with lots of funny feet moving around the lawn.

Abe Lincoln, I totally agree. The forests around here have been cut down to make way for housing developments and of course, our place is just one stop among many for the coyotes, raccoons and possums to pick up some farm raised poultry and lamb. There are a lot of cougars around too, but so far we have been spared them, unlike our neighbors within walking distance of our place.

Flower, your words are very kind and I thank-you very much!

Shannon, that call duck is the oldest male, papa duck. Don't he and mama duck make an odd couple?

Pamela said...

I am amazed that there's a "learning curve" for ducks to go into the water. As always, entertaining, informative, and uplifting. Thank you!

Lanny said...

Your quotes on fear and faith are well chosen.

Yesterday morning at seven-thirty, eight o'clock I was sitting in my dining room with the window open and I heard a horrible scream from out across our pond. It was much like the coyote call set on "deer." And sure enough Dirt went out and chased a couple of coyotes off of their morning kill, a spotted fawn. Anna and Norrine saw a coyote between her house and the big pond in the early afternoon just the other day.

But to keep everything locked up isn't healthy either is it?

Daisy said...

Loved watching your ducks sally to and fro, back and forth, Kathy. I keep thinking of the saying, "He took to that like a duck takes to water." HA! I always thought that meant a duck likes the water---now I'm not so sure. :D Loved the photos and quotes together. You wove a wonderful story.