A squeak. That's the only way to describe the sound from baby stick duck. A palmful of black, yellow and red feathers brimming with a cuteness level beyond comprehension. Yes, Stick Duck is back and with a baby!
If you're wondering what/who is Stick Duck you need to read part 1 of this adventure in bird nesting on the banks of the Thames (click here).
[and if you're viewing this on your emails click on the title to see it in your web browser to see the photos]
So clearly I need to update this story.
Not long after Stick Duck was evicted from his nest by those nasty Grebes we returned from a weekend away to find the Grebe nest, which was built right next to Stick Duck's nest after they had evicted him, had disappeared, and so too did most of Stick Duck's nest. We were quite confused as to what/who had done this but it couldn't have been by accident and there is only one animal on this marina with the fidelity and motivation to do this, human. We were also a little aghast as now no birds were nesting in that location and couldn't imagine why someone would've done that.
But alas, what's done is done. Instead we enjoyed the sights of the other birds and their chicks emerging from tucked away corners of the river. A slight confession. I've never really cared for birds, I've always been a big fauna type of person. The bigger and badder the better. Partly I think that is due to having grown up in London, where even sparrows and robins were scarce and only the scavenging pigeon was commonplace. But living on the marina, a natural watering hole, nursery and gathering place for so many species has made me a convert. I've learnt very quickly the names and behavior of a variety of birds, the cormorant for instance can hold his breath for over 17 seconds whilst diving underwater fishing. And in order to do this he has to have a low level of buoyancy and so he swims very low in the water with almost his entire body submerged. So it's no surprise that when he's out of the water he spreads his big black wings, batman style, drying them.
Now I've digressed from a digression. One of the greatest delights has been seeing a family of swans coming into the marina each day. We've been watching the three chicks grow up to be bold and curious juveniles.
And here we are back on track. We had gone away for a period of about a month to celebrate our wedding in Portugal and upon our return we were greeted by the squeak from outside our window. It was none other than a little floating ball of fur, bobbing up and down like a rubber duck. It was baby Stick Duck.
Baby Stick Duck was tiny and so cute! When we saw baby Stick Duck for the first time all the other chicks had been kicking around for a few weeks. Stick Duck's chick was clearly late, but so incredible that Stick Duck succeeded against the odds. I dare say I did have a lump in my throat.
Good luck Stick Duck! :)