I know this is going to be hard--I think they might be this blog's most popular characters--but the ducks are going to a new home this weekend.
Before you unsubscribe and/or stop talking to me forever, let me explain how we came to the decision.
It started with a neighborhood walk. There are now about five urban chicken keepers within a stone's throw of our house, and one evening Sweet Husband, the Kid, and I went to check out the newest one.
"It's so clean." I observed, somewhat wonderingly. "And they have...seven...eight...ten...gosh, a whole dozen chickens...in the same amount of space that we have!"
"But they don't have ducks." Sweet Husband ruefully replied.
And there's the rub. The ducks are sloppy, messy girls. There's no way around it.
They can splash all the water from a waterer in 10 minutes flat, and the slooshy, sucky, wet noise the ground in our chicken pen now almost permanently makes cannot be healthy for humans or chickens. No amount of clean straw will keep it soaked up. And another summer of emptying and cleaning their kiddie pool every other day--and that's still not really even enough--was making Sweet Husband and I tired just thinking about it.
Truthfully, I'm more of a chicken person. I like chicken eggs better--it's a subtle difference, but I can tell. I like chicken personalities better--in comparison to the ducks, they're almost cuddly. All Spring I've been thinking that I'd love to get a few more chicks, but I just didn't think we could add more birds to an area that already felt on the edge of being overloaded.
The ducks just aren't working for us.
But you'll all be happy to hear that Nice Farmer/Lawyer Guy--happy to add three more eggs to his daily gathering, I suspect--has agreed to take them, and they will be looked after by two of the cutest little girls in the history of little girls. So Macy and Ella and Kaki will have a happy ending, even if it's not with me.
Though it didn't work out in the long run, I'm really glad that we tried keeping ducks. I don't see it as a failure, so much as it was a learning experience. Their little duckling antics were adorable, and they learned to get along with the chickens beautifully. I can't deny that they have character out the wazoo. I would gladly raise ducks again some day when we're in a place that's more suited to their needs....somewhere with a nice big pond!
And, if it helps, there is a strong likelihood there will be some baby chick pictures here next week to hopefully fill the hole that I know I'm leaving in all of you duck-lover's hearts. (In fact, if anyone has any female singer names they'd like to suggest, I have a list of ideas going....)