Animal Poachery

Cockroach Duck Owl

Ξ Poem Duck Notes Song ♫
© 1988..2009 by Andreas Wittenstein. Some rights reserved. (CC)

duck talk, babble, gabble, squawk, quack: Ducks seem to have a limited vocabulary of around three different basic calls.

co-aqueduct: Most duck species prefer byways when the weather permits, moving to open water when the ponds, creeks, and side-canals freeze over.

clucked a ruckus, clacked a racket: When duck hens want to drive away harassing drakes, they utter a loud, insistent clucking, clacking call that incites their mates to defend them. A flock of hens clacking in solidarity can create quite a racket.

drake joke: It has long been the fashion among scientists to pretend that non-human animals feel no emotions, in spite of the fact that emotions originate in evolutionarily ancient parts of the brain. Like most birds, ducks are strongly sexually dimorphic, and drakes exhibit many exaggerated behaviors that surely often elicit humor, whether or not ducks have the linguistic wherewithal to communicate it in the form of jokes.

duck-walk, waddle, wobble, squat: The duck's ambulatory apparatus is adapted more for swimming than walking, resulting in a characteristic waddle as it shifts its center of gravity over alternating widely spaced oversized webbed feet and maneuvers those alternating feet under its center of gravity.

poked her beak back 'bout her back: Ducks and many other waterfowl spend much of their time preening their feathers with oil to maintain their buoyancy by sealing in a layer of air.

quack: Duck hens use a simple quack to herd their ducklings away from danger or toward food, and to announce their presence to other ducks.

drank some yucky bracken muck: Many ducks are dabblers, skimming surface water into their open beaks and squirting it back out of closed beaks through comb-like ridges of lamellae to filter out the food. Others are divers, filtering shrimp and other invertebrates out of the pondmuck.

stuck her scut up, sunk her neck: Among waterfowl, the dabbling duck is particularly buoyant, and will often dip only its head and long neck underwater to feed on underwater plants in the shallows or survey its underwater realm, leaving nothing but its short tail (scut) waving in the air where one might ordinarily expect to see a head. Dabblers can keep their feet underwater during this maneuver because their legs are attached far forward from the tail, nearly halfway to the neck.

quack-quack-quack: In courtship, ducks call out with a long decrescendoing series of quacks.

For more information on ducks, see the Wikipedia Duck article.

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