A short story about the neighbors who moved to the pond.
The first part of May, early one morning, as I take my dogs for their walk, I noticed many tiny dots walking around on the muddy banks of a pond I live next to; I thought it to be rather odd that black dots could walk around, so I moved in closer to the pond, and I noticed a couple of mallard ducks have not only moved in but had managed to have eleven ducklings.
I could not imagine having eleven children all at once! The ducklings' parents are doing an outstanding job of raising their young. I have built up a certain amount of trust with them as I don't let my dogs swim out into the pond and eat them. I am sure they would if I let them, and I am sure that would build trust with anyone. I am allowed to get closer than I should to take pictures and videos of them. I try not to get them to use human contact, though, because not all humans are kind!
In my picture, the male watches over the family while the female takes a nap.
Today, Thursday, May thirteenth, I made it home and went for a walk by the pond. I saw the ducklings; I noticed how they have grown in just a few weeks. They are not ready to fly, but I am sure they will be soon.
Saturday, May fifteenth, I noticed the ducklings have grown about half the size of the parents. Soon it will be flying lessons, and the parents are allowing them to stray a little more than they initially would. They lost one of their babies somehow, but overall, the parents are doing a wonderful job!
May seventeenth, I went for a walk by the pond and found the ducks had learned how to fly and were gone except for one; one was not ready to leave. It had problems or hatched later than its siblings. I was disappointed that I was not able to watch them learn to fly. I genuinely wanted to see their struggles and see if they all took to the sky as they did to the water.
May eighteen, two-thousand and twenty-one, I thought the ducklings had learned how to fly and took off, but this was not the case as I was driving to work one rainy day; the female had ducklings playing in the street. They especially enjoyed the fast-moving water at the street's edge. It was moving fast but not so fast as to sweep them away. When the mother saw me coming, she limped and waddled towards the left side of the road, but her young did not move. I honked and said for her to get them out of the street; to my surprise, which is precisely what she did! I know she did not understand me, but I scared her into saving the young ducklings.
She had to get the ones on the right side of the road. It took her a few minutes, but I waited because if I did not, someone else, not as the patient, would plow through them and kill every one of them.
May twenty-first, what was once ducklings turned into adults, and they learned how to fly and flew away. It is a bitter-sweet goodbye as the ducks grew up. I was thrilled to witness their various stages of development, and they were cute through all their learning. Now they can return next year and have families of their own!