We needed to give away a few of our ducks, having the male/female ratio disproportionate in the wrong direction. I had made mention to Deirdre that we weren’t going to catch them right away in the morning (meeting up with the recipient at 2:30pm), but that when we were going to, we would herd them all inside the coop and close the doors. This would make it much easier to choose the right ones to get rid of, because, of course, it was very important to Deirdre that we keep the “right” drakes.
Deirdre came in beaming a bit bashfully (yes, that is physically possible; but I didn’t have a camera to capture the moment for you).
“Well, I have good news and bad news!” she proclaimed.
“Okay,” I said. “What’s the good news and bad news?”
“Well, first I’ll tell you the good news. The good news is that now I definitely, definitely, DEFINITELY know for sure which male harlequin to keep!” Thus she declares like Christmas has come.
“And what’s the bad news?”
“Oh. . .well, . . .I forgot to make sure the gate was closed, so all the ducks went to the creek.”
Head bonk. Head bonk. Head bonk.
So, after preparing our box for transportation, I explain to Deidre we will have to herd the ducks from the creek to the coop, so we properly capture our prey. Deirdre insists we can catch them at the creek.
“How on earth do you think we can do that with out getting soaked to our underdandies?”
“BOOTS! We’ll wear boots!”
“How is that going to keep our underdandies dry? In case you didn’t notice the creek is deeper than our boots, and guess what? The ducks, when they’re in the water? Splash a lot. And when they’re chased? They splash more!”
Nonetheless, she was insistent we could catch them at the creek.
“Fine,” I finally said. “We’ll go down to the creek. YOU can try to catch them–not me!–and when it doesn’t work, then we’ll herd them back up to the coop.”
“It will too work! BOOTS!”
(No, this is not a three year old. I don’t blame you for being confused.)
So we trundle outside, heading toward the creek.
Quank. Quank. Qu-quank.
Sharp left turn executed. All the ducks are no longer at the creek. Closer inspection required.
Ducks, being the brilliant creatures that they are, don’t quite get the concept of fences. Pekin (who may be soon named Mary Lou), the two Rouen drakes, and Gertrude are all inside the fence, just by the coop. All four Harlequins are outside the fence, just by the coop.
Bam. Closed the far side of the coop. Ushered in the Harlequins. Bam. Closed the near side of the coop. Catch one, catch two, and the box is taped shut. Isabelle and her “boyfriend” (as Deirdre refers to him; he may soon be dubbed Joseph) are let out of the coop.
That’s the neatest, cleanest, quietest, calmest duck catching I’ve ever done in my life, oops-I-left-the-gate-open notwithstanding.