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Sunday, April 13, 2014


Fifteen baby Wood Duck chicks hatched in our daughter's nest box. The mother Wood Duck flew from the nest box to the ground and the Wood Duck chicks followed making their 'Leap of Faith' from the nest box to the ground below. It was a heart-warming sight watching the proud mother Wood Duck collect all her chicks and waddle off into the weeds with her new little family headed toward the small lake/pond to begin their life's adventure.

After they marched off it was discovered one chick still remained in the nest box. Our son-in-law removed him and placed him on the ground. He ran through the grass chirping and looking for his brothers and sisters but alas, they were gone. His brothers, sisters and mother left him. Immediately our daughter's family adopted this cute Wood Duck chick. Our daughter sat their newest family member on a bench and took his picture. He was too cute sitting on his booty showing his plump little belly with his feet sticking out. They named him Dudley the cute little Wood Duck!

Our three grandsons ranging in age from 10 years to 15 years were infatuated with Dudley and took great care of him. They kept him in a large cardboard box with food and water. Dudley received a lot of attention and was admired by all. On the morning of the third day our grandsons raced to see Dudley. Alas, they found Dudley lying still in the bottom of the box. It was a sad day in Mudville and many tears were shed.

Dudley was buried in their back yard close to the next box where he hatched. He will long be remembered. Hopefully his brothers and sisters will fare well and will be seen with their mother paddling around in the pond close by.



  1. What an incredibly cute picture and a sad ending. My understanding is that birds that age are not fully able to stay warm on their own and require close 'cuddling' for lack of a better word with their siblings. Left alone in a box, the bird may not have been able to regulate his own temperature well enough and died of exposure (despite it not actually being "cold"). If this sort of thing happens again in the future, and the kids become attached, you may want to consider a heat source/heat lamp. Especially at night.

    Perhaps as much of a surprise to me about this blog post - that taking awesome pictures is actually a genetically passed-on trait. This picture belongs in a magazine.Hope others get to see it.

    Rest in Peace, Dudley.

  2. Thank you so much for your kind words and for your insight regarding a heat source. If a similar situation happens again they will be better prepared to handle it. My wife jokes she will have to put feathers on our grandchildren in order for me to take their pictures however our three daughters who love photography take excellent pictures keep us in good supply. Thanks again for your encouraging comments. I am glad you like Aimee's picture and the story with unfortunately a sad ending. Much appreciated.