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WTF is a Call Duck?
We recently added a call duck to the farm, which, though not even a separate species, is quite different from the rest.
Recently, we added a new duck to smol farm who is quite unlike ducks we’ve had in the past. Stevie, as we’re calling him — after notorious anti-blockchain ranter Stephen Diehl — is a call duck. But what makes a call duck a call duck? They are not a separate species, but rather just a breed of the domesticated mallard. The answer, quite grimly, lies in hunting, which lends a strangely fitting angle to his name.
Duck hunting is a popular hobby to this day, and, given our fondness for the fowl, one that profoundly disinterests us — as is the case for most call duck owners. These days, hunters use artificial calls. The notorious Robertson family of Duck Dynasty got rich off of their brand of these artificial calls. But this sort of technology is a relatively recent invention, only gaining traction in the late 1800s. Before then, they used ducks as calls.
The name idea came from an online friend and Dastardly Ducks owner, but we found it strangely fitting. Because, as pointed out by many, most prominently an anon cryptographer who goes by “Suzuha,” Stephen Diehl is actually the Chief Technology Officer of a company that sells private blockchain technology to large corporations. While pretending to be charming and well-intentioned on Twitter, he, in reality, leads people to their doom — much like the original purpose of call ducks.
But we do love Stevie duck. We chose ducks over chickens — though, as of recently, we have chickens too from the same homesteader — because we find them so cute. Given call ducks were bred to be able to be carried around by hunters, they’re smol and poop far less. This makes them far more suited as house pets than most ducks.
For years, I had watched Japanese YouTube channels of people who kept them as pets. Finding call ducks is much harder than regular ducks, but, fortunately, we found someone local selling a few recently. Though we are in the process of overhauling our setup outside to support a lot more outside birds, the opportunity to have a house duck was incredibly exciting.
We were worried how we would fare with house cats and a corgi — and the answer is surprisingly well. Though many call ducks are docile, he’s proven to be more assertive than any duck we’ve owned, despite being less than half of any of their size. When showing aggression, water fowl put their head low to the ground and hiss, a behavior ducks exhibit rarely, but he does as much as a goose. Even when the cats ignore him, if they get too close, he will race at them.
Ducks love peas, and, given he is small enough to go swimming in a storage crate, we have taken to letting him go fishing for peas fairly frequently. We did try taking him out to the child-sized swimming pool we provided for the other water fowl, but he almost immediately got out in order to hiss at and chase a goose — who ran despite being far larger.
So far, the joy of having a call duck has lived up to the hype. Those not already familiar with raising ducks as we are might find them a bit more overwhelming, but it provides a perfect way for us to bring our love of ducks indoors in a way that won’t turn our entire house into a slippery mess of diluted duck dung. Plus, when he is quacking away, I can jokingly dismiss Stevie as just going on about how evil blockchains are again. We love the call duck!
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