This morning our cat snuck up on the deck and scared the bejeebers out of our ducks. I'm not exactly sure what happened - if she just jumped up and scared them or if there was any type of WWF action (we were inside) - just heard 4 crazed quackers flapping and running back into the house. DH went outside to see what happened to the other 2 ducks - the mallards - and they were gone, must've flown off. There was no sign of blood on the deck or cat so I don't think she actually damaged anybody. I'm just worried because the mallards are still pretty new to flying and they've never been this far away from home before. We live in a very rural neighborhood - houses everywhere. How good are mallards homing instincts? Will they be able to find their way home or are they lost out there somewhere? They're VERY loud quackers and I've been outside calling them all morning and haven't heard a peep. My other females, normally quite talkative, have been silent since "the incident". The 2 males are the only ones speaking but they're quacks are so quiet by nature that they're barely audible unless you're standing right near them. They're a very close flock, never been apart since day 1. When the mallards normally fly off the deck into the backyard the others quack non-stop until they're all back together. I just find it odd that there's not a peep out of them now. Anyone have any words of advice or knowledge?