Thursday, October 8, 2009

We'll Quack You Up!

      Hi, I’m Wilbur, an Indian Runner Duck, but some of my trainer friends call me “fluffy top”. 

I live and hang out with two other ducks, Daisy and Petunia.  I am the main star of the “Lord of the Wings” show at the Stone Zoo outside of Boston.  There are a few other birds, but really, who comes to see owls, vultures, hawks, parrots and things like a stork or crow when, obviously, the ducks are the stars.  After all, we quack the audience up.

In the show, I take the lead, running down the ramp toward the awed spectators, and then I charge into the pool for a swim with my pals.  By this point, the crowd is rolling in the aisles. Then we jump out of the pool and head to our off stage dressing room where we chill out until the next performance.

In between shows we stay active with kinesthetics. We can travel anywhere. We are just like our distant cousins in Asia that work in the rice fields. Runner ducks in Asia will follow behind the farmer in the rice paddies eating the insects they stir up.  In exchange, the ducks help aerate the saturated soil with their feet. There aren’t any rice patties in Boston, but we follow our target flag around the theater, backstage, and even into and out of our crate.

We were gearing up for the duck flock agility course competition by zigzagging in and out of weave poles, climbing steps and going over or around new and more challenging obstacles. Unfortunately, the summer came to an end and we migrated back to St. Louis for the fall, where we did get to catch up on the exploits of our two duck friends that went to Little Rock, Arkansas, for the summer.

I have to waddle now.  The pool is calling my name!  Be sure to come see us perform at the World Bird Sanctuary’s Open House on October 17 & 18.  We’ll quack you up!

Article and photos submitted by Christina Lavallee, Naturalist for the World Bird Sanctuary.

1 comment:

Jane said...

At first I read "Indian Rubber Duck"!!!!! Can't wait to see them perform. We may be able to grow rice in St Louis if it doesn't stop raining soon....