Drakes in need

Concern yourself more with accepting responsibility than with assigning blame. Let the possibilities inspire you more than the obstacles discourage you.

Ralph Marston

Recently during a discussion with a friend, I was told of three drakes at a local animal shelter.

Asking how they had come to be there I was told they had been surrendered. A local lady had purchased the group when they were young, on the understanding all were ducks (ie female). As they matured it became obvious that the India Runners were all males.

With a flock of ducks it is important to have the right ratio of ducks and drakes. Too few ducks or too many drakes results in the ducks suffering, and sometimes even becoming paralysed or dying, as the result of too much mating by the males.

Luckily for these boys they were at a compassionate shelter with a no-kill policy.

Whilst appreciating that the carer was looking out for the females in her care, I do not believe surrendering the drakes to the shelter was the right, or responsible, action to take. A decision to take an animal into our care comes with responsibilities. To provide, food, water, a safe environment, shelter, companionship, enrichment. And it is a commitment for life.

The drakes can live as a bachelor flock. The previous carer needed to set up a separate area for the drakes from the ducks and all would be happy.

To simply surrender animals to a shelter because they do not ‘suit’, to make the animals the responsibility of another, is irresponsible and selfish.  Shelters run on donations, with volunteers and limited resources. There are many many animals without a carer who need the support of a shelter.

Knowing how hard it would be for the shelter to rehome the drakes as a group, we approached another rescue with facilities for the drakes. Luckily they were able to assist and so we drove over to collect the three boys. The shelter attendant had a quick lesson in duck wrangling (never ever attempt to catch them by the leg as their legs can easily break) and soon the boys were being chauffeured in style to their new home.

Lucky ducks indeed.

three drakes 1







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