Wednesday, 5 April 2017

D is for Ducks … Dabbling, Diving, Domestic ones …



To the Domestic ones we shall give our undivided attention … noting their economic uses: farmed for meat, eggs, and feathers (particularly their down).

Hen Duck and Drake - Mallards


The word ‘duck’ comes from Old English … a derivative of the verb ‘ducan’ – “to duck, bend down low as if to get under something, or dive”.





Our domesticated ducks are descended from the Mallard … the wild dabbling duck found in the temperate and subtropical zones … hunted for food throughout history …


Miniature Silver Appleyards

There are fourteen types of Duck Breeds at Risk in the UK – the Silver Appleyard was rescued after the War, when poultry in general declined, but has since had a major revival – as an egg producer and a useful table food …




… the Silver Appleyard was imported into North America in the late 1960s but took some twenty years before being readily available as a breed.


Roast Aylesbury Duck with potato cake, broccoli,
butternut puree with cherry sauce


We tend to have Aylesbury Duck here for roasting … just too good and utterly delicious, ducky doos!





Now just to make you laugh … a psychologist with his colleagues at Hertfordshire University, here in the UK, had a year-long Laugh-Lab experiment …


 
... yes, I did say Laugh-Lab, concluding that of all animals … ducks attracted the most humour and silliness: so if you’re ever going to tell a joke about an animal – make it a duck!



“Rubber Duckie” … I’ve never forgotten the C W McCall’s hit song 'Convoy' … using the on-air handle of “Rubber Duck” …



Daffy Duck as Robin Hood, with
Porky as Friar Tuck
… but we can never in our Western world get away from Disney’s Donald Duck, Daffy Duck … Howard the Duck, a comic book character …


… and our own Queen apparently having in her bathroom … her rubber duck wearing a crown – who knows, but 'she' looks coy here … still it’s a good story!


Years ago there was a Duck Lane in Queen Anne's time (early 1700s) which was famous for its second hand bookstalls ... 

Pope in his "Essay on Criticism" comments:
Scotists and Thomists, now, in peace remain,
Amidst their kindred cobwebs in Duck Lane 


Beatrix Potter's
Jemima Puddleduck



That is D for Dramatically Different Ducks  … Domestically Ducking too many Duck jokes from Aspects of British County Rare Breeds …





Counties with the letter D … 
(note some Counties have been retired!, or amended over historical local government … but some I’ve included)

England:  Derbyshire; Devon; Dorset; Durham
Northern Ireland: Down
Scotland:  Dumfriesshire; Dunbartonshire; Dundee
Wales:  Denbighshire; Dyfed


Other Duck Breeds not mentioned:  Abacot Ranger; Cayuga; Shetland; Welsh Harlequin to name a few … see the Poultry Keeper for more information.

Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

53 comments:

Elephant's Child said...

A delightful post.
As well as their humorous side, I think of ducks when I am tempted to envy someone who 'has it all'. Ducks look so serene floating on the water, but out of sight their little legs are going hell for leather keeping them on their 'tranquil' path.

Chicky Kadambari said...

Ducks always remind me of Donald Duck, Uncle Scrooge and Daffy Duck! :P
They sure do look serene, though the yellow rubber ducklings for kids always seem so funny!
Happy AtoZing!
Chicky @ www.mysteriouskaddu.com

Deniz Bevan said...

Loving your theme, Hilary!

Aww, and that Jemima Puddle-duck photo... I've been reading that story nonstop for almost a year now, a you can imagine...

Nilanjana Bose said...

Haha didn't know ducks attracted the max humour, but it makes sense! Love the colours on the male Mallard, so rich!

Nila
Madly-in-Verse
Theme : Arabiana

Lenny Lee said...

hi grandblogmum!
what a cool post about ducks. more stuff i didn't know. sometimes people say something is "ducky" meaning it's cool or sometimes say it sarcastically meaning not so cool. your post is just ducky! (meaning cool).
by the way...
question: what happens to ducks when they fly upside down???
answer: they quack up!
question: what do you get when you put a bunch of ducks into a box?
answer: a box of quackers. ha ha.
hope you have a simply ducky day. :)

crgalvin said...

I can't duck out of commenting because that would be riduckulous after Lenny's quackers. :))

Keith's Ramblings said...

Who hasn't had a rubber duck at some time in their lives? I have to admit I thought there were only two kinds of duck - those in the park and Gressingham duck in the supermarket! I had low beams in my pub and on one, I had a sign that said 'Duck or Grouse'! Another day, another lesson. Thanks Hilary.

Another day in Amble Bay!

A Heron's View said...

All I can say is well done Ducky!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ EC - thanks always good to see you first. I hadn't thought about 'duck' being 'having it all' - but that serenity does abound doesn't it - yet underneath it all the stress is paddling away - fun thought ...

@ Chicky - ducks can conjure all kinds of thoughts ... and kids love them - real or otherwise ...

@ Deniz - thanks - and yes couldn't miss Jemima Puddleduck .. and yes to reading the same story - fascinating how the littlies get hooked ...

@ Nila - lots of humour around ducks and it does make sense. Those colours are exquisite aren't they ... as you say - so rich ...

@ Lenny - that's great ... I hope everyone's learning something new - I'm not doing my job otherwise! Yes 'ducky' can be used in so many ways ... clever: well done.

Those jokes are hilarious ... I'm quacking up re-reading them ... I am having a 'ducky-fun' day thank you!

@ Carmel - well done in answer to Lenny's comment and the post ...

@ Keith - I feel sure we've all had rubber ducks at some stage - my mother brought some about 20 years ago ... took me by surprise! Yes of course Gressingham - but it's not 'Rare' and these are meant to be rare breeds ... I enjoy a Gressingham occasionally. Your pub sign sounds hilarious - bet it amused and encouraged an extra drink or two ...

@ Mel - thank you ... this was an easy post and I could make some fun with it ..

Cheers everyone - thank you - a good duck dinner would suit me well .. might just need to wait! Quack quack for now - Hilary

Susan Scott said...

awww, the Queen and her ducky duck ... and of course don't a particular English 'tribe', I forget which one, call each other 'ducks'? Or 'ducky'?
Lovely post Hilary thank you and that Aylesbury Duck looks tooo delicious for words ..

Natasha Duncan-Drake said...

When we had a long weekend in Cheltenham we went to a village a little way out and they had ducks everywhere. Every shop seemed to sell duck food too, so we had a great time feeding them :)
Tasha
Tasha's Thinkings - Shapeshifters and Werewolves

FinnBadger said...

I definitely was not familiar with any of the at-risk duck breeds. And I didn't know they all descended from the Mallard.

Phillip | D is for Dream Delivery

Jean Davis said...

What? No cows today? :) Good to see ducks getting some love too. We've had so much rain the past few days that yesterday, I saw two ducks in a giant puddle in the driveway!
Discarded Darlings - Jean Davis, Speculative Fiction Writer, A to Z: Editing Fiction

Bob Scotney said...

In the area of Lincolnshire where I went to school it was quite common to be addressed as 'Me Duck.' I hope that expression is not endangered too. I wouln't want it to become a rare breed.

bazza said...

I love the kind of Duck they serve in Chinese restaurants. But I am also a keen observer of water birds. Our local park has introduced Pochards very successfully (and Egyptian geese!). Interesting to learn that the origin of the word is similar to other modern meaning of the word.
CLICK HERE for Bazza’s stupendous Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Susan - well we'll never know I guess - but your English 'tribe' query - I think Bob answered it ... East Midlands/Lincolnshire seems to use the term 'ducks' or 'ducky' ... I know I think it might be duck for Easter!

@ Tasha - what fun ... they feed the ducks here in Alfriston - where a little bridge goes over the Cuckmere ... great profits for the shops!

@ Phillip - thanks for the comment about the at-risk duck breeds ... and I'd no idea about most of this until I started writing up the posts ...

@ Jean - nope no cows today ... we need to go for the web-footed variety of species. Oh how funny two ducks arrived in your puddles ... we get swans swimming and wallowing in the overflowing rivers after a torrent ...

@ Bob - thank you for enlightening us about the term 'Me Duck' - I hope the expression isn't endangered .. better than 'my dahling'! ... and won't become a Rare Breed - a special one at that ...

@ Bazza - I enjoy Peking Duck too .. but I think a good old roast duck is delicious and probably the best.

Pochards are pretty and are a 'diving' sort ... and your Egyptian Geese (though a duck!) ... and I love finding out the etymology of words ...

Cheers to you all and thanks for your comments and extra snippets - always useful ... Hilary

Crystal Collier said...

I have actually looked up the etymology on that word before--probably because of a historical use. You know, I'm not a gig fan of eating duck. Call me crazy, but I'd rather have beef, any day.

Hart Johnson said...

My college mascot was a duck, but I loved them even before. Where I live we have them in the summer (mallards) and a pair returns every spring to my neighbors pool until she opens it for the year. I love them!

peppylady (Dora) said...

Love to watch the little duck follow and waddle down to water and take swim.
Coffee is on

cleemckenzie said...

You gave me a long laugh today. The ducks came in second, but I always do smile when I see them waddle their way to water, then tip their ducky bottoms up to the sky while diving for underwater tidbits. I can see why they'd provoke long laughter.

You're close to E! Moving right along.

Victoria Marie Lees said...

Hilary, you have the best posts. They are so interesting and I learn so much. Thanks for sharing this info about ducks. I've never eaten duck nor duck eggs. I guess I think ducks are too pretty to eat.

My children have a "Puddle Duck" stuffed animal and all the Beatrix Potter books compliments of my wonderful Mother-in-Law. Great stories!

Nicola said...

A lovely post that brings back so many fond memories of when my daughter was young. We spent a lot of time outdoors in the Herefordshire and Worcestershire countryside, feeding many a duck and being chased by swans and geese. Thank you for sharing, Hilary.

Sara C. Snider said...

Ducks *are* silly, with their quack-quacking and stubby little legs. It's why I love them so much. :) Great post.

A to Z 2017: Magical and Medicinal Herbs

Julie Flanders said...

Aww, Jemima Puddle Duck!! I LOVE Beatrix Potter's characters and books. My favorite when I was little and still love them today.
That's funny about the Laugh Lab. I wouldn't have thought of that with ducks but it makes sense. They are silly and fun!

Laurel Garver said...

I've seen some Silver Appleyards at one of the duck gathering spots in Fairmount Park here in Philadelphia. I didn't know they were a rare breed--they look kind of like a mutt-sort of mixture of mallard and a white domestic duck. How fascinating!

Rhodesia said...

Love this post, I like ducks any way but you have just brought more interesting facts to my notice. I wonder why the duck has done so well as a cartoon character,I guess it is there real character coming through :-)
Have a great week Hilary, cheers Diane.

Joanne said...

Don't forget Duckie from Pretty in Pink. Delightful post as you got down with ducks. They can certainly make a lot of noise at our local pond. Fun to watch now with ducklings all in a row.

Elsie Amata said...

So here I was enjoying pictures of the duckies swimming on the water and then BAM, they're on a plate! hahahaha

I also now have the song, "Rubber Duckie" in my head. ;)

Mary Montague Sikes said...

Love the rubber ducks. We don't often have duck for dinner. Thanks for the info.

Jo said...

It is many years since I ate a duck egg. Not eaten duck much since I emigrated either. Shockingly expensive.

I still have one in my freezer - maybe I should cook it for Easter.

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

They are lovely looking birds, it is too bad (for them) that they taste good.

Sharon M Himsl said...

I could watch ducks all afternoon given the chance. One of my favorite children's books is 'Make Way for Ducklings' by Robert McCloskey.
Have never eaten duck to my knowledge. Not common where I live. Thanks!

"Female Scientists Before Our Time"
Shells–Tales–Sails

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Don't forget Darkwing Duck!

diedre Knight said...

Never imagined I'd say this about a duck, but those Silver Appleyards are lovely! Lots of interesting information here, Hilary!

Courtney Turner said...

Great post, we have some Aflac insurance ducks, they are stuffed animals and when you squeeze them, they squawk "Aflaaaac" which is very fun to do and throw at someone. I used to have silent Muscovy ducks - they don't quack much.

Maui Jungalow

John Holton said...

I had no idea there were that many breeds of duck. Guess I never gave it any thought.

John Holton
A to Z Challenge Co-Host

Nick Wilford said...

I think it's the quack that's the funniest thing about a duck. A bizarre sound really. I do enjoy a crispy duck!

Jacqui Murray said...

Lovely post. I have a collection of wooden ducks--mallards maybe? They make me feel peaceful just seeing them.

Liz A. said...

We've got ducks. I see them constantly around where I live.

Denise Covey said...

Ducks don't ask for much, so what did they do to deserve getting served up on our tables as delicious duck a l'orange? Drool. Drool. Drool. Ducks are so picturesque.

You're going great with this A-Z, Hilary! You must be loving the research!

Denise :-)

Emily Bloomquist said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Emily Bloomquist said...

Ha ha! Now I have the song Convoy going through my head. Thank you for the interesting ´duckie´ education :) I am really enjoying your blog.

Emily | My Life In Ecuador

Ann Bennett said...

So much to know about Ducks. I must say, very useful information to repeat. We don't eat much duck in my part of the world. But I do enjoy watching them.

Michael Di Gesu said...

Hi Hillary,

SO nice to read your post again. It's been ages since I visited and I truly enjoyed your DUCK madness.LOL

What a FUN theme.... You must be enjoying yourself writing these....Hope to drop by again in a few....'

Always a pleasure visiting...

SENCO Cat Herder said...

Two visiting ducks landed on our front lawn the other morning - the nearby lake has recently been restored so I think that's where they were heading. Lots of very interesting information in today's post - as always - so happy to be back reading your A to Z Challenge :) Special Teaching at Pempi’s Palace

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Crystal – I love etymology too – but duck or beef – both good … I love a varied diet …

@ Hart – oh that’s great to have a mascot as a duck. That must be fun for the kids to see the returning mallards …

@ Dora – thanks for the visit … I’ll be over and they are fun aren’t they waddling around …

@ Lee – that’s excellent – laughter becomes her! Certainly I’ve had a few extra laughs here … fifth letter today ‘E’ day … seems a long way to go!

@ Victoria – many thanks. Duck is positively delicious – a treat – but I’m not sure I’ve had duck eggs either. Wonderful Puddle Duck is around with your children and they’ve got all the books – excellent … last year was the 150th anniversary for Beatrix and her books …

@ Sara – poor old ‘ducks’ – but they are just endearing to us all …

@ Julie – last year was Beatrix Potter’s 150th anniversary since her birth … The Laugh Lab was a great find … so ducks make us laugh …

@ Laurel – oh brilliant you’ve seen some of the Silver Appleyards brought in to the Showground at Fairmount Park. They are or were a Rare Breed over here … not sure how they came about …

@ Diane – I love ducks too … but they can create a mess around the ponds – I particularly remember Zoo Lake in South Africa … gungy! The Laugh Lab seemed to sort out the quacks from the non-funnies! So ducks it be …

@ Joanne – I’m sure I’ve forgotten so many Ducks .. but didn’t know Duckie from Pretty in Pink – thanks for letting us know. They are fun aren’t they and the ducklings paddling or poddling (in or out of water) along behind are too sweet …

@ Elsie – yes sorry about that … we are concerned with our tummies at times! Oh glad you’ve picked up “Rubber Duckie” song … that stays around with me too …

@ Monti – duck is more available to eat now and is enjoyed … glad the rubber ducks amused …

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Jo – I’m not sure I’ve eaten a duck’s egg … but if you’ve got the duck in the freezer – I’d get it out and use it at Easter – I think I’ll have some then …

@ Arleen – I know … they do look lovely in the wild, yet are so delicious to eat …

@ Sharon – they are fun just to sit quietly in the sun watching the ducks dabble around … I don’t know the Robert McCloskey book … we have such a range of foods here – we’re lucky I guess …

@ Alex – oh ok … won’t (now) forget Darkwing Duck!

@ Diedre – funny old life isn’t it – how we can change our thought processes just via few words and an image – the Silver Appleyards attracted me too …

@ Courtney – oh yes the ‘fun’ joke stuffed animals – can totally amuse us can’t they … silent Muscovy ducks sound a great breed to have around …

@ John – I’ve learnt lots since writing these posts up …

@ Nick – you might well be right about the ‘quack’ sound – but I do enjoy eating them and Crispy Duck too …

@ Jacqui – the wooden ducks must be lovely and peaceful … a good display …

@ Liz – are they around your part of the world … we have them here

@ Denise – you’re right about them not asking for much – they were easy to catch back in ‘dem old days … nets (or similar rustic net like things) were invented really early in our living history … they add to the tranquillity of the great outdoors near ponds or lakes …

Thanks – I started researching in the summer of 2015 – deciding on the letters and then bringing across ideas as I came found them … so they were written for last year’s A-Z – I’ve forgotten what I wrote though … so it’s a wee bit of a surprise!

@ Emily – sorry about the song Convoy – but I used to be hooked to it at one stage when it first came out. Delighted you’re happy being here – while I’m enjoying Ecuador …

@ Ann- lots to know about Ducks … I’m glad you’re enjoying the read. We’re lucky here in England … as we seem to have lots of choice for our meals … and they are fun to watch out on the river banks or ponds etc ..

@ Michael – pleasure to see you here – I’m happy you enjoyed my Duck madness …

The theme I decided nearly two years ago and had finished them for last year’s A-Z – which I couldn’t do … but they’ve been sitting maturing for over a year!

@ Senco – good to see you … how lovely to have the privilege of having the ducks land on your property … sounds like they’ll be with you quite often with that lake nearby. Delighted you enjoyed your visit and being here ..

Thanks so much everyone – lovely seeing you and all the ‘ducky’ comments! Cheers for now - Hilary

Cynthia Rodrigues Manchekar said...

Had someone told me this morning that I would read a thoroughly entertaining post about the duck, that quiet and unruffled bird, and I would enjoy this re-acquaintance so much, I would never have believed them.

And yet, here I am.

Loved this post.

Lynn said...

Ha! I have one of those rubber duckies, too - displayed in my shower area. Love the thought of the queen having one with a crown!

Vinodini Iyer said...

Ducks are so cute! I can watch them for hours. The fact that the word duck is derived from the word 'ducan' or bending over, is new to me. So much to learn from your posts, each day.

bookworm said...

Definitely Delightful. I used to own ducks, and their eggs are Doubly Delicious in baked goods. The Unknown Journey Ahead agingonthespectrum.blogspot.com

Michelle Wallace said...

Roast Aylesbury Duck with potato cake, broccoli, butternut puree with cherry sauce...looks yummy!

In these troubled times, we need more Laugh-Lab types of experiments. After all, laughter IS the best medicine. One thing unique about South Africans is our ability to laugh at ourselves...we have a distinct brand of humour!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Cynthia - it's a funny old world isn't it ... I'm just very happy you've been bemused by 'my ducks'! Thank you so much ...

@ Lynn - looks like a few of us have those ducks around ... joining the Queen!

@ Vinodini - they are a delight to have on our ponds ... I enjoy putting in extra snippets into my posts as here with 'ducan' ..

@ Bookworm - yes, they are definitely delightful. Interesting you used to have some ducks and that duck eggs are doubly delicious and doubly rich - now you tell me ... I am reminded ...

@ Michelle - yes the Aylesbury Duck did look so good - it had to go in ...

Times are indeed troubled - and yes living in South Africa I was always amazed at the happiness and laughter that abounded ... and as you so rightly say Laughter is the best medicine ...

Thanks to you five - good to have your comments and thoughts - cheers Hilary