He didn’t mind their “Quack! Quack! Quack!”

The fox went out on a chilly night,
He prayed for the moon to give him light,
For he’d many a mile to go that night,
Before he reached the town-o, town-o, town-o,
He’d many a mile to go that night,
Before he reached the town-o.

He ran til he came to a great big pen,
Where the ducks and the geese were put therein,
“A couple of you will grease my chin,
Before I leave this town-o, town-o, town-o,
A couple of you will grease my chin,
Before I leave this town-o.”

He grabbed the gray goose by the neck,
Throwed a duck across his back,
He didn’t mind their quack, quack, quack,
And their legs a-dangling down-o, down-o, down-o,
He didn’t mind their quack, quack, quack,
And their legs a-dangling down-o.

-excerpt from “The Fox”, traditional folk song

Today I found Emma dead in the garden.  She is one of my Blue Indian Runner Ducks.  I didn’t see any wound marks, though I do think she was attacked because a few feathers were on the ground around her.

My hunch is that a greedy fox couldn’t manage her removal once he’d gotten her and so she was just “wasted” and left behind.  You can tell the predator, typically, by the clues they leave behind and this mystery smacked of Vulpes vulpes.  Plus it seems a common story right now amongst my chicken colleagues that the Mister has been a-hunting.

I am always sad to think of the fear and the stress for my poor poultry when something like this occurs.  It is always unsettling for me even though it is an acceptable fact that these things will happen.

So to the pet-cemetery I went, my merry band and I, to lay her to rest.  Ironically, a little plastic cupcake decoration of a clown-head was unearthed while I prepared the grave.  I took it as a positive symbol because in our family, we have always been impressed by the permanent smiles that ducks wear.  Their countenance is endearing that way.

And also, though this day started with sleet and rain, grey clouds parted and the sun shone in the final moments as I lay her body in the ground and covered her with moist earth.  The menagerie that joined me in my sad task refused to allow for solemnity, as evidenced by the following photos:

Our pet cemetery, where we lay to rest our beloveds...

Cricket, ever the gamer, suggesting that while I shovel I should throw this toy for him to fetch.

Clowns in the rough.

My tool bears the weight of sadness for me.

Marcia, the grave-inspector

What are you gonna do? The pets were turning the tragedy into a comedy.

Professional Mourners

Rest in Peace, Emma

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. How sad!—though it is in the nature of things. However, I am always a little bit excited when I find deceased animals like roadkill or creatures that my cat brings in. I like to find ways of recycling them such as collecting their feathers or skinning them (like the ermine). Makes for good natural art projects!

  2. I’m sorry for your loss, dear friend. I understand it well. It is a part of country living. My horse trainer taught me: “Be grateful for the honor of knowing them.” Beautiful piece, thanks for sharing.

    1. You are welcome -yes it is never easy saying goodbye. No matter what size, how many hooves or paws or fleece or feathers… Those are good words to remember, thank you Curtiss Ann.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: