One duckling is all we have left. He or she was one week old yesterday, and he or she has been named Star. The second one died on the third night, and Star would have departed this mortal coil also if I hadn’t realised that Pip was treating them like baby bantams, not ducklings. Blimmin’ teenage mothers! This last remaining duckling was looking very sickly, falling down, eyes rolling back, so I brought him inside and squirted some water down his throat with a syringe, put some water in the kitchen sink and dumped him in it (I’m presuming it’s a male). Well, that revived him! He paddled around, dunked his little beak in, shook his head, stopped his plaintive peeping, and perked up immediately.
I let him get thoroughly drenched then took him back out to Pip to be warmed under her feathers again (she just sits on him all the time). Then I whipped into PG Wrightsons and bought a huge bag of chick starter meal and force-fed him some of that until he got the hang of eating. Now he’s thriving.
Meanwhile, it’s back to the serious business of running the vineyard. Budburst is well and truly upon us. As you look out across the vines, you can see the haze of green as the leaves start to colour up and so far we’ve had no major frosts but that doesn’t mean we’ll escape. Snow’s forecast for tomorrow on the Rimutaka Ranges. Today the wind is fair whipping across the property; CCQC’s out on the tractor mowing that spring grass and I’m feeling pretty satisfied with some of my winter planting, like these examples of the 500 daffodil bulbs I put in.
And before we went abroad we planted our orchard which is now blooming. Apple blossom is my favourite, quite delicately pink at the same time the pale green leaves appear
and this is the crabapple blossom
In between the pavers this sweetie bravely flowers
And of course there’s no show without my three devoted companionsAnyone would think they were deliberately colour coordinated. Imagine how crazy this is going to look when I have following me one dog, one cat, one bantam rooster, one bantam hen, and one Peking duck.