Earlier this week, Darrell Montegudo, our custodian, discovered a mother duck sitting on a clutch of eggs in the shrubbery just outside the Museum’s front gate. Mindful of her safety and concerned by the lack of nearby water, we’ve done a little duck research. Thanks to the folks at the Irvine Nature Center, I now know that:
If we move Mother Duck’s eggs now, she will probably reject them and we’ll be faced with the round-the-clock responsibility of keeping them warm and then raising the little creatures if they manage to hatch. Probably not a good option. Plus, if she’s enamored of our shrubbery, she’ll just lay more eggs.
If we wait until the ducklings hatch, we may have more luck moving them, as long as Mom sees where we’re going and we move slowly enough for her to follow us. (They don’t call them bird brains for nothing.) If we can manage to lure the family inside the safety of our courtyard and set up a wading pool, we just might be able to convince them to stick around for awhile.
Check back for more on the ongoing saga! We’re hoping for happy hatching news on Mother’s Day.