AFLAK Attack

This longish article about kidnapped semi-domesticated Muscovy ducks ending up on dinner plates got some attention over at Rick’s place yesterday.

Muscovy-Drake-Face_JR34955Reading the story, I can’t decide which is more appalling:

(a) making pets out of Muscovy ducks,

(b) stealing somebody’s pet, or

(c) actually eating anything as disgusting as a Muscovy duck.

Over the years I’ve had some run-ins with the hideous critters, so I dug through the archives and unearthed the following essay, from September, 2005:

Emerging from the house the other morning I encounter a puddle of watery shit on the sidewalk large enough to warrant a lifeguard. This can mean one of two things: canvassing politicians, or Muscovy ducks. Insofar as there’s no impending election, I figure it’s the ducks.

Everybody in south Florida knows about Muscovy ducks.  With their distended asses, greasy-looking feathers, and hideously mottled bare-red faces, their eerie resemblance to victims of radiation poisoning is unsettling. The males, which can grow to 15 pounds, emit a hissing noise when confronted, and while they can actually fly, it’s with all the grace of Rosie O’Donnell skateboarding.

But it’s their tendency to shit all over creation that is most irritating. Traveling in packs of 3 or 4, they slowly waddle down the sidewalk, shit pouring from their feathered butts every step of the way. Green, milky, and semi-solid—imagine a bowl of mildewed grits—it’s a source of salmonella and E-Coli bacteria, as well as a revolting and slippery obstacle to put a bare foot into.

I’m told that Caribbean people eat these things. When I mentioned this to a Bahamian acquaintance, he stared at me in horror. “Dat duck dere?!” he asked, pointing in disbelief.

Even though they’re non-native to south Florida, it’s illegal to slaughter them, presumably for the same reason that you can’t kill tourists, even in season. You can chase them, as I have, waving a baseball bat and screaming epithets, when I found them eating from the food bowls I leave for the cats (and merrily shitting all over the carport). But that bends the animal lovers out of shape, and frankly, the ducks don’t seem to really care: they shoot me a dirty look, waggle their tail feathers..and shit.

lif peking duck 061009I thought about putting poison out, but that might end up inside some neighborhood kid, and I’d have a lot of explaining to do to i ts parents. Besides, with my luck, the damn duck would drop dead somewhere I can’t reach it, and rot. I hate it when that happens.

If they were bums—oh, I’m sorry, “residentially-challenged persons”—I could call the city and have them removed. If they were dogs, cats, or alligators, I summon animal control. But this feathered pestilence? Is there such a thing as DuckBusters?

PostScript:  The original posting attracted some strange comments, including one from “Starvin Marvin” who linked to a site with 20 recipes (including one for the eggs!).  I got an email from a guy who sells humane duck traps.  And predictably, I got some hate mail from an animal lover.

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8 Responses to AFLAK Attack

  1. Elmer Fudd says:

    If it walks like a duck …

  2. Michael Vick says:

    can we fight’m?

  3. Joe Balls says:

    What’s the difference what they LOOK like? Turkeys aren’t exactly beauty pageant material either, and people don’t have problems scarfing them down.

    In fact, when you look at it from another angle, maybe it’s easier to eat ugly things. Why devour a cute cuddly little lamb?

    Asparagus is pretty cute, too.

  4. Ruh Roh says:

    My neighborhood backs up to a golf course with a pond where the damn things hang out. Every so often they jump the fence and take a stroll through the streets, leaving a trail of feathers and shit. Some of my neighbors fed them until we asked them to knock it off, which reduced the number of ducks coming through. I wouldn’t hurt them (on pourpose), but I sure don’t like them.

  5. Yeah they’re edible. Good for you, too. So leave US alone, hear?

  6. Mr Schwinnckle says:

    Its a fucking duck! They shit all over the place. I remember them at the wifes house in Pembroke Pines. We used to have to hose down the carport almost daily from duck shit.

  7. K says:

    Your a dumb ass and as such, you are entitled to your dumbass opinions.
    Instead of whining about a duck that is actually beneficial to this earth (eats tons of misquotes/spiders/and even its shit is great fertilizer!) Why don’t you do something good for the earth and shut the fuck up?

  8. Squathole says:

    K: Thank you for your comment, which goes into the annals of the all-time greats. Or should that be “anals”?

    Too bad Muscovy ducks eat “misquotes” and not misspellings, isn’t it?

    Thanks again. Please come back, maybe reacting to some more recent posts. You’re precious. I can tell.

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