Monday, 11 March 2013

Mother Nature can be cruel

What a bad choice of day to hatch :(
This morning whilst breaking the Ice on the Pond I noticed the Ducks were watching something in the reeds so were the Chickens.

It was the Hen Morhen trying to lead four newly hatched chicks to the East end of the pond and they were struggling terribly over the frosted ground it was bitterly cold - really not a day to hatch anything.

I think in all probability my movements triggered the evacuation of the nest which for some odd reason the Hen made at the 'busy' end of the Pond.

Not a clever move and nothing we could have done to prevent the inevitable.

It had just four eggs in it for a while but she was rarely sitting on it and I thought due to the cold she had long since abandoned it but clearly not. so this is how events unfolded. and these were taken from the other side of the pond whilst shivering so not the best!

This is what the Ducks were fascinated by.


But so were the Chickens, Morehen to the Rescue but perhaps too late one had already had a peck I think


 She was quite able to face off Snowdrop or whatever we have called her.


 The Chicks followed her calls

 


 The Ducks actually provided an escort

 
 Others came to watch


 


But they just didn't have much of a fighting chance these two I later found dying in a hollow after lasting about an hour in the freezing conditions. Sadly the Hen Morhen didn't try and brood them out in the open which may have saved them.

  


 

 I checked the nest was empty just in case as the Ducks were very interested in it.


 They tested it for size but it collapsed later
 
 Even Duck Norris had a go!

So there might still be two little Morhen Chicks out there but I doubt it, we had three broods of Morhens last year so plenty of time for them to have another go.

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