Flock Friday for October 18

It’s time for a confession… I take way too many pictures of the ducks. They’re just so cute! Several times this week I told myself “no, put away that phone, you don’t need any more pictures”, and had a hard time narrowing down the ones to include this week. The new iPhone 11 Pro Max with the fancy machine learning optimizations takes some amazingly detailed photos, too.

Without further ado, the ducks:

Ducks

Ducks

Ducks

Duck

Duck

Ducks

Duck

Duck

Ducks

Ducks

I haven’t included a picture from inside the duck house for a while; here are the ducks eating:

Ducks eating in the duck house

Ducks with lots of leaves in the pond:

Ducks with lots of leaves in the pond

Okay, enough ducks. Let’s look at the chickens enjoying some rice; one of their favorite treats:

Chickens

Chickens

Chickens

Chickens

The older chickens enjoyed the rice, too:

Chickens

Finally, some hummingbirds:

Hummingbirds

Flock Friday for October 11

It’s time to check on the ducks and chickens.

Let’s start with the ducks, as usual:

Ducks

Ducks

Ducks

Ducks

I really like that last picture of the ducks.

And the new chickens; here they are rushing to see me:

Chickens

Chickens

Chickens

Chickens

Chickens

Some older chickens:

Chickens

Inside the old coop, the flock block is slowly getting smaller:

Chickens

Flock Friday for October 4

We’re in Cancún now, but I prepared this Flock Friday update before I left, so you wouldn’t have to suffer a week without ducks and chickens. You’re welcome.

The ducks discovered a fun new activity: digging for bugs in the grass next to the pond:

Ducks digging for bugs in the grass

Ducks digging for bugs in the grass

Ducks digging for bugs in the grass

Ducks digging for bugs in the grass

Digging amongst the fallen leaves is also enjoyable:

Ducks digging for bugs next to the stream

Ducks digging for bugs next to the stream

The next day, they were back in the grass:

Ducks digging for bugs in the grass

Ducks digging for bugs in the grass

Ducks digging for bugs in the grass

The heron returns:

The heron returns

Finally, a couple of pictures of the young chickens:

Chickens

Chickens

That’s it for this week! I can’t view the cameras while away, so I might include some pictures from this week in next week’s post.

Flock Friday for September 27

It’s Flock Friday time.

Here are a couple of ducks heading up the ramp into their house:

Ducks heading into their house

Duck butts, looking through the pop door into the duck house:

Duck butts

Some pictures of the ducks in the pond, scooping up treats, and going between sunlight and shadow:

Ducks in pond

Ducks in pond

Ducks in pond

Ducks in pond

Ducks in pond

Another day, I went over to the west side of the pond, and the ducks followed me:

Ducks in pond

The chickens have been roosting above the window in the coop, which isn’t entirely approved, since jumping down from that height could injure them, or cause other chaos:

Chickens roosting above window

Like this: a chicken using another as a step on the way down:

Chickens roosting above window

So I trimmed the hardware cloth above the window to be less roost-like. One still managed to perch above the window, but the others took the hint:

Chickens roosting above window

A couple of pictures of the new chickens outdoors:

Chickens

Chickens

A chicken pecking at zucchini:

Chicken pecking at zucchini

A steller’s jay bird flying off with a peanut from the tray:

Steller's jay with a peanut

Flock Friday for September 20

Hi there. It’s me again. Doing the Friday thing.

Ducks in their house:

Ducks in their house

Paladout (what we call the alien gray cat, if you missed that in the cat updates) visited the ducks one night; they were both startled to see each other, but he wandered off without any drama:

Cat by ducks

I doubt cats would go after ducks, being similar size. And the ducks were safe behind the fencing around the duck house ramp. I’ve seen them resting there overnight several times.

Ducks exploring the back of the pond:

Ducks at the back of the pond

I went back there, and they looked at me quizzically:

Ducks at the back of the pond

A view of almost the entire pond; you may be able to make out the ducks still at the back:

Ducks at the back of the pond

The heron visited again, and knocked the mobile camera out of alignment (it isn’t permanently mounted, but just resting on top of a boulder, with some bricks loosely anchoring it; one day I’ll buy a permanent one for there). Here it’s just jumped down from the rock:

Heron knocked camera

The culprit:

Heron

The heron taking off:

Heron taking off

The ducks exploring the grass between the duck house and waterfall. One more place for me to check for eggs when they start laying:

Ducks exploring grass

The ducks and fish scooping up treats:

Ducks and fish

Three ducks, three big koi:

Ducks and fish

(Yes, the fish are bigger than the ducks.)

Ducks circling:

Ducks

The new chickens pecking at some tomato treats:

Chickens with tomatoes

Chickens through weeds:

Chickens through weeds

Again with tomatoes:

Chickens with tomatoes

Hey there:

Chickens

The older chickens with tomatoes:

Chickens

We have a lot of tomatoes from the veggie garden right now; Jenn is canning 20 pounds or so of them, but the chickens get the split ones, and the ones the bugs got to first… if they’re really lucky, with tasty insect bonuses.

Hanging out with Merida, giving her pats:

Chickens

Fuzzy butt:

Chicken

Domino and Buffy:

Chickens

Lastly, a shot of some hummingbirds:

Hummingbirds

Did you see today’s YouTube video of hummingbirds and a wasp on that feeder?

Flock Friday for September 13

Welcome to a wet Flock Friday!

As hinted on my personal blog, we had a heron visit our pond this week. Twice.

Here’s the heron sliding off the edge of the pond (which slopes steeply) and taking a header in the pond:

Heron in pond

After it got out, it fluffed up most impressively:

Heron in pond

Heron next to the pond:

Heron next to pond

It flew over to below the pond deck, and one of the large koi swam up and startled it, causing it to jump back:

Heron startled by koi

Heron eat fish (and frogs and such), but I think the big koi are way too big for it to tackle. I didn’t see it catch anything; the smaller fish were wise enough to stay hidden.

Here it is flying above the pond:

Heron flying

The following night, a rat or similar rodent was spotted near the duck house, with the ducks warily eyeing it:

Rat

Here’s a shot of the ducks that kinda shows the delightful green iridescence of the cayuga duck:

Ducks

Ducks on the ramp:

Ducks on ramp

A few days later, hey look, the heron is back:

Heron again

In the pond:

Heron in pond

Heron startled by a koi again:

Heron startled by a koi again

Heron flying to the duck house:

Heron flying

Like an ornament on the duck house roof:

Heron on duck house

Those big koi are bullies; here’s one chasing the ducks, while another eats their mealworm treats:

Koi chasing ducks

Ducks from inside house:

Ducks from inside house

Ducks

On to the chickens. Here’s Buffy, one of the older girls:

Buffy chicken

Camilla:

Camilla chicken

Kiwi:

Kiwi chicken

Mo, starting to molt:

Mo chicken

And some pics of the young chickens:

Young chickens

Chickens

Chicken

Chickens

Did you see the YouTube video of our young chickens curiously clucking?

Flock Friday for September 6

Fantastic Flock Friday, Friends and Family!

Zoomy ducks:

Zoomy ducks

Ducks flapping:

Ducks flapping

More zoomy ducks:

Zoomy ducks

Duck at the bottom of the waterfall:

Duck at the bottom of the waterfall

Fish and ducks:

Fish and ducks

The big koi are so huge:

Fish

Ducks near the bank:

Ducks

On the bank:

Ducks on bank

The duck house, with ducks beyond, and koi in the pond:

Ducks and fish

I mucked out the chicken coops, and dumped a pile of fresh bedding (that they’ll spread out for me):

Chickens with fresh bedding

A queue impatiently waiting as the pop door opens:

Pop door opening

Pop door opening

We added a flock block; a compressed block of seeds and such as supplemental food:

Flock block

Chickens with a corn cob:

Chickens with corn cob

Old and new chickens, separated by a fence:

Chickens

The young chickens with a strawberry:

Chickens with strawberry

A couple of the older chickens with corn cob:

Chickens with corn cob

Old and young chickens:

Old and young chickens

Flock Friday for August 30

Let’s check in with some of the homestead flock, shall we?

Duck butts:

Duck butts

Night swim:

Night swim

A sequence of three pictures of a duck flying from the bank into the pond:

Duck flying

Duck flying

Duck landing

Just like dogs and cats, ducks sometimes have zoomies, randomly flapping their wings and hydroplaning around the pond:

Duck zoomies

A raccoon waded through the edge of the pond, while the ducks watched from a safe distance:

Raccoon and ducks

Attempting an artistic shot of the ducks in the rain through a whirligig:

Ducks in rain through whirligig

The ducks in the pond during light rain:

Ducks in pond

Ducks in pond

Bert standing on one leg. I don’t recall seeing them on the bank in the northwest corner of the pond before:

Duck standing on one leg

Exploring the secret path on the west side of the pond:

Ducks exploring secret path

Ducks exploring secret path

Flapping wings:

Duck flapping wings

On to the chicks. Some of them are starting to cluck (instead of peep) now, so I think I’ll start calling them chickens instead of chicks. They aren’t quite fully grown yet, and won’t start laying for another month or two, but are getting there.

A bit of pecking order aggro:

Chicken aggro

Perhaps triggered by a wild bird in the coop; I hadn’t seen that before (must have come in the pop door):

Bird in coop

So far they prefer to roost above the nesting boxes at night (and above the window, not really an official roost). But I decided to put the poop tray back under the main roosts, in case they do switch to that someday:

Poop tray

Another coop invader: a cheeky squirrel:

Squirrel in coop

The squirrel came back a bit later, much to the confusion and concern of the chickens:

Squirrel in coop

I went out there and chased it out, and it hasn’t been back since (so far).

Chickens on the roosts:

Chickens on roosts

Chickens

Moana looking at me:

Moana looking at me

Four on the floor:

Chickens

Moana eating mealworms from my hand:

Moana eating mealworms from my hand

The chickens outside in their run. Still lots of weeds, which is fine; dual purpose of snacks and shade from the sun for them:

Chickens outside

No pictures of the old chickens this week. I’ll try to get some for next time!