Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What's the Temperature?

We started acquiring ducks several years ago, when we moved to our rural clime and discovered that grasshoppers and junebugs abounded in the yard. We got ducks...I guess because I had always heard that Okie phrase, "...like ducks on a junebug!"

And so there: we got us some.

The ducks are pretty good in the pest control business. Sometimes they eat our greenery, and we aren't overly fond of that. They do lay nice eggs, which we enjoy. I have mentioned recently that they are laying about a baker's dozen each day - more than enough to keep us and our neighbors in custard and meringues. Interestingly, that Spouse o' Mine works with a few Chinese students, by whom duck eggs are considered something of a delicacy. Grad Student Gillian says the Asian Mart where she shops sells duck eggs at $1.00 each. Zounds! We just give ours to the Chinese students. And the food pantry at our church. And, occasionally, to our dogs.

This week the temperatures have been slightly warmer than the past few weeks. One way I can tell, without benefit of a thermometer, is how the ducks lay their eggs:

On a freezing day (literally), the ducks cover their eggs with straw and the wood shavings, and I have to sift through the shavings to find all thirteen or so. On a warmer-than-freezing day, they leave them uncovered. Additionally, I took this photo today, and there were two or three eggs in each little nest. This is not always the case - on freezing days, the ducks tend to lay ALL their eggs in one basket, so to speak. I think this also is a means to keep them warm. That one nest must have a revolving door on it for all the ducks to have a turn at laying.

That's all I have to share. Ducks. Ducks and eggs.

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