Don't let the difficulties of the present moments overshadow the reality of God's promises. God's promises still stand. And God's promises are stronger than our failures.

Friday, April 29, 2011

A New Family In The Neighborhood



In the aftermath of the recent tornadoes and thunder storms there is much clean up to do in our yard.  While we didn't get any major damage of any kind we do have limbs down that must be burned.  The wind in Arkansas this spring has been unlike anything I've ever seen - it almost blows me down at times and it's constant, rarely stopping.  Early one morning my husband found a quiet, wind-free few minutes to try to burn the limbs,but this Mama Wood Duck, minus any babies, kept wandering in circles around a tall Sycamore tree near the fire.  She acted as if she were hurt trying to distract my husband.  He ignored her because he knew she wouldn't let him get close.  This afternoon we saw the reason why!

We have a wood duck box out beside the lake.  That mama duck hatched her babies yesterday.  This mama we didn't even know we had!  She was nesting inside the sycamore tree about 20 feet up.  We didn't realize there was a hole there and frankly, now that we do, we find that scary because that means at least part of that tree is rotten.

While we were sitting on the deck watching these little black things kept dropping out of the tree.  We thought they were gum balls because we have millions of those!  Then we realized it wasn't gumballs; instead those little black things were baby ducks!

Mama wandered around and around the tree gathering them all up until finally she decided that was all she was going to get and off to the lake she went, babies waddling behind.  I can't imagine how they lived through that jump from up so high!

There are so many and they bunch together so we can't get an accurate count but we've guessed at 15 or more.  While we were standing watching the daddy duck went directly away from his family and cried pitifully trying to draw us away from them.

Mama didn't take them right out on the big lake but down a canal that runs beside our neighbor's property where it is a bit sheltered from the wind and the waves churned up by the boats going by.  I wonder if I put a "Baby Crossing" sign out on my deck the boats would slow down.  Naw, they don't slow down for human children so I guess wood ducks are out of the question.

Mother's Day is coming.  I think this Mama Duck might deserve a present!

20 comments:

Vroomans' Quilts said...

So happy you came thru that storm with just 'minor damage'. A silver lining to it all - a new family, so I agree that mama duck deserves a Mother's Day present.

Wendy said...

How fun to see you family of ducks and yes, Momma deserves a special treat for keeping her family together, doesn't she? I'm so glad to hear you are safe and sound! God Bless!!

Karen said...

I am glad to know you are safe and sound and so is your home. Terrible storm!

Tracy P. said...

Very sweet post! Hope you have seen the worst of it now. I'm so glad you have made it without major damage.

Elora said...

How coool to see them jump! here's a line from Wikipedia: "The ducklings may jump from heights of up to 88 metres (290 ft) without injury" Seems cruel, but it works! Yes hasn't this wind been horrible?!! Incessant and fierce.

Elora

Arkansas Patti said...

What a wonderful birthing. How lucky for you to see it all.
I have to agree with the wind. I can't remember a still day. I have to tie my hammock down with bricks or it would spin like a top.
Besides the obvious problems, it wrecks the hair do.

Carol said...

Oh Marlene, spring has definitely sprung at your place! Neat that the ducks built a nest up a tree! Sorry if that means the tree is hollow now. :-( Hope mama duck can keep all her babies alive! I've watched seagulls swoop down on mallard ducklings and whisk them away. They must stick together to be safe.

What sort of gift would you give for a Mother's Day gift if you could?

sunny said...

How fun to see the ducklings jump. I've heard about them, but have never actually seen them. It's amazing that they jump so quickly after hatching. Thanks for sharing your pictures.

Lena . . . said...

How adorable. They are so cute, but can you imagine trying to feed a family that size??

Needled Mom said...

Awwww! So cute!

Lelia Chealey said...

So cute! I love watching Momma ducks. They're so protective, it's sweet.

Val said...

We have a goose sitting on 5 eggs and I am waiting every day to see when they hatch. LOVE the ducks!

Jane's Fabrics and Quilts said...

What a smart Mama to find such a safe place for her little ones. They are darling, thank you for sharing.

Grammy Staffy said...

What a great post and story. I love all of the pictures. They have put a smile on my face.

I have been worried about you with the news of all of the tornadoes.I am glad that your home did not get serious damage.

I think of you often with love. Hugs, Lura

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

What a beautiful "grace"... to behold such loveliness in a single pause. This has blessed me more than you know. Not sure why, but I'll just hold it throughout the day and let the image comfort me.

peace~elaine

Michelle May (Shell) said...

I'm so glad you are ok and I must say seeing these little one's survive through all of this makes my heart so incredibly happy!!!! Life is just so precious.
xx, shell

rubyslipperz said...

Oh...what a WONDERFUL new family to have in your neighborhood! Glad to see there is a ray of sunshine to the clouds that rolled in several days ago. I'm glad you are doing good!

hugZ,
annie
rubyslipperz106.blogspot.com

Cindy said...

It reminds me of one of my favorite children's books, Make Way For Ducklings! lol

Marie said...

Nature is so wonderful and beautiful. Love the little duckies. I, too, am grateful that you have been safe with all of the tornadoes touching down this spring. (((hugs)))

Floss said...

I love baby duck, when I was a child we had a mumma duck that had babies in our back yard each year. We would put water out for them and makes staps so they could get in and out.