wings and things

A disco duckling, a haughty gander, and a very depressed turkey

on February 11, 2014

The little duckling in the centre of this photo is distinct from the other two because s/he is smaller and paler. But, after what I witnessed the other evening, I have decided to call this duckling Michael Jackson.


I had put the gang, including ducklings, into their yard for the night, then turned the hose on the avocado tree which is right behind Ming’s shed where he now lives. As soon as I turned the hose on, Michael Jackson squeezed through the fence and began swimming in the growing puddle. The other two ducklings (the ‘Twins’ because they are identical) followed Michael Jackson to the puddle, so I had to let Godfrey out again in order to herd them back in. He gave me his usual ‘look’ – a combination of ferocity and disdain.


At that very moment, Ming began to play his guitar very loudly and the birds and I got a bit of a fright. Well, little Michael Jackson went crazy and I nearly ran to Ming’s shed to tell him to stop the noise until I realized that the duckling was actually dancing! It ran around in circles, twirled around in the puddle of water, threw itself at the twins and frolicked madly. When Ming stopped playing his guitar for a few moments, the duckling just stood still, as if waiting, then, when Ming resumed, the whole happy dance thing happened again. It’s one of the funniest things I have ever seen and I wish I had it on video.

Godfrey watched fondly, as I did, then I turned the hose off and he herded Michael Jackson and the twins back into the yard.


The only lonely one now is Baby Turkey because we lost Bubble, his main companion months ago. Baby Turkey now prefers to be in his own yard, away from the happiness of the geese and ducks. He sleeps a lot but when he gets up he still looks so sad. I have decided to try and find him a mate, a female turkey, so that he will be happy again and am hoping that the place where I got the ducklings will have one to spare. They have turkey chicks so maybe they will sell me one of the mothers.


Baby Turkey’s loneliness is a constant reminder of Anthony’s. I have not been allowed into the nursing home for a few days because I have a chest infection, so Ming and my mother have been in several times and I am relying on phone chats with Ants. He doesn’t understand that I am sick; he just seems to think I am neglecting him and I got a phone-call the other morning from one of the nurses, to say he didn’t want to get out of bed. I ended up speaking to him but he was quite incoherent. This is the first time I have known him to be like this in the morning because this usually happens in the evening.

I don’t know why the quote ‘This is how it is’ resonates so powerfully for me; after all, it is a statement of the obvious. I like it though because it beckons some sort of response, it curls around a sort of question, and it invites a sort of acceptance.

Sort of!

Godfrey and I have agreed to disagree, and I still love him.

51 responses to “A disco duckling, a haughty gander, and a very depressed turkey

  1. Terry says:

    I loved this post!!! I love the cute photos!!!

  2. bulldog says:

    Ming’s music must be good that the duckling dance to it… love this post…

  3. I hope you can find a turkey for your lonely bird. Next time you do the tree watering, why not have your camera handy and ask Ming if he’d play his guitar to see if the situation could be repeated. It would be a hoot to see that on a video clip.

  4. susanpoozan says:

    I loved the story of the dancing duckling.

  5. Good luck in finding Baby Turkey a mate. What a sight that must have been. You’ll have to see which type of music makes Michael Jackson dance best!

  6. mimijk says:

    I’m developing a crush on Godfrey!! And yes, Jules this is how it is – in the moments when you can smile broadly; in the moments when you bow your head in grief. Most importantly, feel better!!

  7. Maybe Ming can play again, and Michael Jackson will dance again, and you can video it. πŸ™‚

    I hope you are feeling better and soon able to visit your Anthony. It’s obvious to me that his disease is not able to rob him of his need for you. Your love story is amazing.

  8. Vicki (from Victoria A Photography) says:

    I can actually imagine a duckling dancing (only because I see such funny bird antics myself).

    Birds definitely need company – I’m sure Baby Turkey wants to be a big boy now (and chat up the ‘chicks’). Will you still call him Baby Turkey if he becomes a Dad?

  9. I laughed at your descriptions here of MJ and feel so bad for Baby Turkey, I certainly hope you can find a mate for him. My heart hurts for you and Ant sure hope you get better quickly so you can see him. God bless, love and hugs {{{xx}}}

  10. I have the song Disco Duck stuck in my head. I am sure that once Anthony sees you he will bounce right back. It is amazing that music resonates for all forms of life. πŸ™‚

  11. Lisa Rest says:

    The dancing duckling is just priceless. I wish I could get on a plane and fly right out to see! And yes, Ming must play very well – I would take the duckling’s interpretation as a compliment. I also think the idea of a mate for your turkey is an excellent one. And your perception is right-on. Birds tell us so much with body language and I suspect some other cues we’re not consciously aware of. Hope you feel a lot better very soon too.

  12. lensgirl53 says:

    Please tell Baby Turkey that he should be glad he is not a turkey in the USA or, well….his fate for Thanksgiving Day would really be depressing. 😦 I hope you get better real soon so all the chicks will be happy. xo

    • jmgoyder says:

      Funniest thing is that just before the Christmas before last, Baby Turkey was injured so I had to take him to the vet. While other people were spending a small fortune on buying turkeys to eat for Christmas (including me) I was spending a small fortune on getting BT fixed. Ironic!

  13. elizabeth says:

    So wish you’d got that dancing duckling on video Jules. Hey, if you do you could put it on You-Tube and (I believe) make some moolah! πŸ™‚ Hope you chest-infection is getting better, well, I mean you are getting better. πŸ™‚

  14. I’d love to see a video of Michael Jackson dancing! Just thinking about it makes me smile.

  15. ksbeth says:

    it sounds like you have a whole little eccentric bird family and what a wonderful distraction from all that is going on. feel better soon )

  16. Trisha says:

    A dancing duckling…what an amazing thing to witness! I hope you can find a companion for Baby Turkey and that you get better so you can get in to see Anthony soon. The separation must be so hard for both of you.

  17. I hope ‘baby turkey’ gets a mate… he looks soooo lonely…. he really does.. Diane

  18. Love the photos, love the post.

  19. batgurrl says:

    Dancing is for all species. Love you baby birds. πŸ˜‰

  20. Hope you get well soon!

  21. FlaHam says:

    Julie, You have a lovely flock of feathered creatures. I am so sure Baby will appreciate your efforts, though I am at a lost as to explain your role in it all. Procurer of female companionship?? This doesn’t make you a turkey pimp does it ??? LOL LOL Is that the title of the job you want?? Just curious. — Really love the pictures and your ongoing story. But you knew I wouldn’t let it rest. Take care, Bill

  22. Cute pics. Hope your chest infection clears up soon. Hugs

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