Monday, September 19, 2011

Field Trip Friday--D

Last week we were learning letter "D", so I decided to take the quints to feed the Ducks for our Field Trip Friday. We have gone to feed the ducks at the Arboretum in the past, and although the kids always have a good time, I have found the ducks there to be a little bit on the snobby side. I think they get fed so frequently, that they don't get care about food much. The last time we went, we had a hard time coaxing the ducks to even come close to us, and when they finally wandered over, they just looked at our bread crumbs in disgust and said, "Quackity Quack Quack" (which by interpretation is "Seriously? We waddled all the way over here for THIS? We are too good for your store-brand time stop at Great Harvest before you attempt to feed us").

On the night before our scheduled field trip, I was taking Riley and Kaiya to their volleyball practices, when I noticed that the YMCA has a large pond with LOTS of ducks in it! I immediately decided that our duck-feeding field trip needed to be at the YMCA.

Friday morning, we arrived at the pond, excited and armed lunchboxes for a picnic and with baggies of bread to feed the ducks.

Kaydence, Kyndall, Kassidy, Rustin and Ryder---armed and dangerous!

Almost immediately, the ducks (and geese) sent a welcoming party out to greet us. I could tell already that these were no snooty Arboretum ducks!

We walked out on the pier and started tossing bread crumbs at the ducks in the water. They were so excited, they were climbing all over each other to get the crumbs (the ducks, not the kids). The kids were happy, the ducks were happy, all was going well.....UNTIL Kyndall accidentally dropped an entire piece of bread on the pier. The ducks could not contain themselves...they started jumping (can ducks jump?) onto the pier and attacking the bread.

Kyndall's dropped piece of bread

Once the slice of bread had been devoured, the ducks turned their attention to US. Before we knew it, we were surrounded by about 30 hungry ducks/geese who looked like they were ready to attack. The kids were completely freaked out at this point. I ushered them up the pier and to the nearest picnic table while attempting to distract the ducks by throwing bread crumbs behind us. The kids and I climbed on top of the picnic table for safety. It was quite a site! I really wish I would have gotten a picture of the ducks as they surrounded the table quacking at us! In the moment, I was too busy trying to figure out my defense strategy if the ducks became even more aggressive and started jumping on the table with us.

My first thought was to take our remaining bread and throw it as far away as possible to get the ducks away from us. That plan did not work so well. The ducks would leave momentarily to chase down the bread, but always came right back. Then I decided the best thing to do was hide all food and hope the ducks would give up.

Standing on top of the picnic table

The ducks/geese momentarily distracted by the piece of bread that I threw as far as possible.

Kassidy, Kaydence, Ryder, Rustin and Kyndall----eventually the ducks started to give up and wander away. The kids sad down on the picnic table to watch them from afar.

Kyndall and Kaydence were the only two brave enough to walk back out on the pier after the ducks lost interest in us.

Back in the water, the ducks/geese didn't look quite as menacing as they did when they were chasing us!

Rustin, Ryder and Kassidy didn't dare leave the safety of the picnic bench.

At this point, the kids had decided they had had enough of the ducks, and we found a picnic table across the field (far away from the ducks) to eat our lunch.

Picnic Time!

No sooner had we sat down and taken out our food, when Ugly Duck and his Sidekick appeared. It was back to the top of the picnic table.

Ugly Duck acted like he pretty much owned the place. He circled the table and pecked at the bench and my legs during our entire lunch. Sidekick was a little nicer, but did jump onto the bench a few times and had to be shooed off. Ugly Duck was VERY persistent. When I got home and looked at my pictures, I realized that he was in most of them---he pretty much stuck to us like glue the entire day! Ugly Duck finally gave up after about 30 minutes and he and Sidekick retreated, much to the kids relief!

We finished the afternoon by playing on the nearby playground (it was mostly fenced in, so no more ducks!) Hopefully our little adventure didn't cause any permanent psychological damage to the kids :-) Despite our Debacle with the Ducks, I thought the Day was Delightful!



Karen said...

We have a small pond in our town and they have banned feeding the ducks. They say it isn't healthly for them. There was a whole list of reasons why, but "not healthy" was what caught my attention. Also said it messed up their reproduction systems. I'm glad you had a delightful day with the ducks.

Crazy Granny said...

If I looked like the naughty ugly duck I'd have some anger issues myself.

Wiley said...

My office is in the Arboretum and we live just a mile or two away, but the ducks are absolutely snobs, so we don't try to feed them often. You can't even get them to come see what you are throwing!

Tobi said...

I'm just glad you all made it out alive. Those ducks looked like they were getting ready to eat you alive!

Pam said...

I have to say I was laughing, I could just imagine you hustling you little ones to the picnic table then getting on top of the table with them....just the picture is funny. I am glad you were all safe and had a good day! By the way, I have run from my mother's front door of her house to my car, which isn't very far because she feeds a squirrel and it will come down the tree and follow you and climb up your leg thinking anyone will feed him. When I see him I say, "oh mom here's your squirrel and I take off running.....I'm 50 years old, so imagine that! Thanks for the humor I enjoyed your story. A friend in East Texas, Pam.

Anonymous said...

As a PreKindergarten teacher, I am so interested and amused by your latest entries. Sounds like you'll have material for a great teacher book or a new career when the kids start kindergarten. Thanks for making each visit to your website so much fun. This is one special family!

Julia and Aaron said...

Geese can quite vicious! They've chased me and my kids down before even when we haven't been feeding them, hissing at us all the way.

The preschool sounds great!

Sara Rappleye said...

Noelle and I had a experience like this a while ago when her oldest Lily was one. Lily had no fear and faced the big ugly gease that kept on attacking her.

cindyquiltsOR said...

Well, I remember raising ugly ducks. They are a breed called Muscovy. My ex hated them -- they will chase anything that looks like it might have food. To me, they look like burn victims.

Cheerios work for feeding as well, and they will float on the water. Some places say no feeding because of the "debris" they leave after you have gone. Others pretend it is about the duck ...

Sure enjoy watching your children grow.

MommyLydia said...

I LOVE your Letter Field Trips! I'll have to see if my singleton likes them as well :)

(I used to be My Boaz's Ruth. Username has changed since we now have a little Ruth of our own)

MommyLydia said...

I LOVE your Letter Field Trips! I'll have to see if my singleton likes them as well :)

(I used to be My Boaz's Ruth. Username has changed since we now have a little Ruth of our own)