I've always wanted backyard poultry, and while I always thought chickens were the only option, whenI saw ducks it was love at first sight. When we moved to a 5 acre house with no HOA, ducks were the first things we got, 3 day old ducklings from Metzer Farms.
Here they are on the day we got them (August 3rd, 2016)
There are 5 White Layers and 5 Golden 300 Hybrids. One drake of each variety.
From the very first day their was no way to keep them out of the water.
They grew up fast. From itty bitty ducklings to toddlers:
And they grew up just like any other duck, with endless love for all things dirt and water. And mud.
At one month old, they were no longer little ducklings. They were all grown up.
By October they were already accomplishing adult responsibilities, like helping us look for pecans:
Practicing their synchronized hawk watching:
And digging holes in mud.
The drake finally got his full coat of feathers, beautiful colors on his head and wings.
They flapped their wings and tried to fly
And the white drake was assured of his masculinity by the little curly feather on his tail
All was well.
And then this happened.
The very first egg.
Soon we very getting three a day. Then 8. They were grown ducks now.
But of course that didn't stop them from doing what they love.
Then tragedy struck. In September, a month after their first birthday, a fox attacked. We lost one duck that sad day, a Golden 300 we had dubbed "Loud" for her outgoing, obnoxious personality.
But life went on.
They went through a molt... and one drake found himself a mate that he's now never seen without.
It snowed, and they left waddle prints everywhere...
And just when they thought they were safe, they were attacked again, by a hawk. It got it's talons on one, our "pretty" duck, but she managed to survive through the hardships and is still thriving today.
So they look forward to a bright future full of peas, corn, worms, and, of course, lots and lots of mud.