as i told you last week, i wanted to take time to introduce you to the stars of our chicken crew. i thought, what better way to start such a segment off, than with the duck of the chicken crew.
as you or he may or may not know, pascal is a duck. he was born a duck rather. but has been raised a chicken. this is not some sick livestock-psychology experimentation but rather what happens on any self respecting Hodge-Podge farm. animals get mixed. a cow spends her days with the pigs. a cat spends his mornings sitting on a clutch of eggs. and a duck gets thrown in with the chickens for lack of other ducks.
to read all about the story of pascal's birth and best-chicken-friend, florence and her untimely death you can visit here.
now pascal is a grown man. or woman. we aren't actually sure. it isn't that sexing a duck is complicated. you can tell from their tail feathers. or from their quack. or from their plumage. but for whatever reason we haven't cared to really know. pascal is pascal. he is neither he nor she. neither duck nor chicken. pascal is pascal. (but for simplicity, as this wish-wash could get rather old, i will refer to him as a duck and with the use of masculine pronouns).
i've wondered ever since he and florence lived in the house as little duckling and chick what he has thought of his existence. he learned to cheap before he could quack. he has been designated as Sentry of the Chickens for bedtime. he stands guard at their door til dusk. he cannot perch. he cannot dust bathe. but he sleeps in a nest box, keeping the eggs toasty through the night. he waddles around the chicken yard following his troop. quacking grumpily at the smaller chicks. taking 'swims' in the 3 gallon horse bucket we fill for him.
we're thinking of finally determining pascal's gender and getting him...or her....a mate. eventually we want a pond for them as it is cruel and disgusting (the poop!) to withhold water from waterfowl.
but for now pascal will continue to exist as he as always done. as one of the gang. i will continue to snuggle his soft downy chest anytime he makes the mistake of waddling into my arm's reach. and our chickens will continue to be grateful for the funny looking bird that keeps the night watch.
so now you have met pascal.