I miss Boris. 

You can see her in this photo on the day they arrived, back in 2008. She’s one of the little black and yellow puffballs that look like they’re wearing ninja eye masks. These were my first ducks.

After a few weeks, she looked like this. All feet. Boris was small enough at this point to dive underwater in the duck pool and zoom around. She looked like a little ducky torpedo.

When I ordered ducklings in April of 2008, the order included two Mallards. They both turned out to be females. One of them flew away that fall, never to return, because we were a wee bit lax on the wing clipping front. Boris also flew away. Boris flew away many times.

Boris always came back. She would fly off, zoom around the house, and then fly back to the pen. Her sense of direction was always a tiny bit off, as she could never fly directly back into the pen, but close enough.

When an owl attacked the ducks in 2009, she flew off to safety, and came back when the danger was over. The only time she never came back was when she landed in front of the town cemetery, nestled under a cedar tree, and decided to stay awhile. The Mr. went and got her, and walked back home with her tucked under his arm.

In the winter, she would fall asleep on snowbanks with her head tucked under her wing. Snow would fall on her for hours before she woke up. You only knew she was there because there would be a little duck-shaped lump in the snow.

She was loud, cranky, and cantankerous. She learned she could bite your pant leg when she was supremely pissed about something, and get your attention in a big hurry. For some reason, I called her Boris one morning, and the name just stuck. 
We lost Boris to a raccoon at the end of June this year. 
I miss the cranky little thing, especially this time of year, when the geese are flying south. I hear them all day long, honking away up there, and am reminded that this would be the time of year when Boris would get a wild hair (or feather, rather) up her butt and decide to take off. 
When I go outside to feed the birds in the morning (just the chicken, named Thumper, and one Welsh Harlequin duck survived the raccoon, and are henceforth known as The Chuck) it still feels a little bit off. I still expect to hear Boris quacking at me, wondering where in the damn hell her food is. Obviously, she never said damn hell, but if she could have, I think she would have. 

The raccoon attacked around 4 am. I was awake to see the sunrise later that morning, and this is what it looked like.

It was enough. 

3 thoughts on “Boris”

  1. Thanks for your comments, you are correct, it certainly isn't easy. You don't think you'll get attached to a duck, but it happens.

    And it's nice to hear from another duck person! They seem to get little love from all the chicken people out there.

  2. oh! for some reason the whole post did not load until after I commented and I just read the whole story!!!! I am so sorry for your loss. Haven't lost a duck, but a few chickens. It certainly isn't easy. XO

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