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Duck adoption!?

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
Okay, I've got a weird one for you guys:

As you know we have wild ducks in our neighborhood pond, finally things settled but we only had 2 hens drop babies, one pekin who lost her only baby (yes she only had one duckling) and then a mallard hen who watched out 5 and lost one.

Now Mama mallard has had her ducklings about 2 weeks I'd say (first time I saw them was about May 21) and lost one baby about a week later after we first saw them.

Now since then she only had her 4 pure mallard ducklings. So imagine my surprise when yesterday I come around to see that she suddenly had a pure yellow pekin duckling in her brood!

I'm not the most versed on duck behavior, but I do know most hens only take care of those she hatched. But this is a pure pekin duckling, not a mix in any way from what I can see.

So what happened? Did she adopt this duckling from a pekin that didn't bother with it? Did she get cuckooed by a pekin hen? Do ducks even pull cuckoo-ing? Anyone have any ideas here?
post #2 of 2
Ducks will adopt ducklings that are not theirs and hens will sometimes lay an egg in another hen's nest so either scenario is a possibility.
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