A is for Aylesbury Ducks

A2Z-BADGE-0002015-LifeisGood-230_zps660c38a0I have joined the A-Z challenge, which means I will be posting daily short pieces, which follow the alphabet, and other members of the challenge will hopefully visit the blog and comment on it!

At the same time, I hope many of them – you – will be adding your links to your spare, which is a networking page for anyone about anything.  Plug done!

As I’ve just hatched some chicks – see the pictures here – it occurred to me that I might follow a theme – as per the teams suggestions – and am starting off with the idea of choosing different breeds of poultry to talk about.

I may digress at some point, and also add some of these posts on my crafts blog julzcrafts.com, so when there isn’t a daily post here about chickens or poultry, there will hopefully be one on a related subject, or not related, smile, there.

(Addendum:  In fact I emailed the organisers to ask if this was OK, and actually they can’t track me if I do that, but I think a compromise would be – to reblog this first post to julzcrafts.com, and as the cut off point for the challenge is to miss 5 days, switch over to that site for a few days during the month – lets see if it works!)

aylesbury Aylesbury Ducks

were big business in the 18th and 19th century and most of them were reared in  – guess where  – yes you got it – Aylesbury! (Buckinghamshire, UK).  They used to walk the ducks, yes they all walked, sometimes with little leather shoes on their feet, to London, to market, where they were slaughtered and sold for a good profit.  (A bit like the way cattle were taken to the railways in the cowboy days of the USA)

Wikipedia says “By the 1950s only one significant flock of

Prize-winning Aylesbury duck (front) and drake (rear), 1873

Prize-winning Aylesbury duck (front) and drake (rear), 1873

Aylesbury ducks remained in Buckinghamshire, and by 1966 there were no duck-breeding or -rearing businesses of any size remaining in Aylesbury itself. Although there is only one surviving flock of pure Aylesbury ducks in the United Kingdom and the breed is critically endangered in the United States, the Aylesbury duck remains a symbol of the town of Aylesbury, and appears on the coat of arms of Aylesbury and on the club badge of Aylesbury United.”

However, there has been some sort of revival of Aylesbury Ducks in the last few years, I think I bought some eggs a few years ago from a breeder, and they were a commercial cross with the old Aylesbury’s and the more quickly reared Pekin Ducks.

The eggs hatched, the ducks grew, I couldn’t face killing them to eat, and sadly, the fox got them.  I haven’t tried rearing them again!

 

11 thoughts on “A is for Aylesbury Ducks

  1. I just can’t get the image of ‘walking the ducks’ to market out of my head, it’s charming. Thanks for the smile.

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    1. well – i’m almost sure that’s what they did, I know I saw some programme on tv about it and that stuck in my head – Aylesbury’s were very popular for feasts etc, and of course, they fattened them up again, when they got to town!

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  2. Ducks are so great and what a great example. My parents have had ducks and geese off and on for years in their farm ponds. I however have chickens on our farm. Egg layers only, they are members of the family and not for the table! I can’t wait to see your posts on other types of poultry. I’ll have at least one of my own this month in the A to Z Challenge.

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    1. great – what breed/s do you keep? I’ll not say yet what I have, as it will form part of the series – but to be honest, i couldn’t think of anything else, and this one’s easy, for a chicken lover, cos there is lots of information out there for me to mine! Will go back and follow your site – smile

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  3. Reblogged this on julz crafts and commented:

    I am reblogging this post from “the spare” which is my other site, because I am following the A-Z challenge this month, and it seems that they need me to start here, but I have started there – you will see what I mean when you read the blog – the theme I will mostly follow for this month’s challenge, is breeds of poultry.

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  4. Great post. Maybe you should start raising ducks to bring their population back. I don’t raise stuff like that to eat either. Maybe chickens, as I have to get some to keep the grasshoppers out of the garden. Are you okay?

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