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Purrfect Harmony: Cat Adopts And Nurses Ducklings!  
User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5575 posts, RR: 32
Posted (11 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1469 times:

Ahhhhhhhhh:

http://www.independent.ie/irish-news...s-to-nurse-ducklings-29291970.html

10 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20322 posts, RR: 63
Reply 1, posted (11 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 1452 times:

Aww, how cute. There was a little duckling lost from its brood in our parking lot today—I hope it found its way back to mama. Nice that spring is here again.


International Homo of Mystery
User currently offlineAirstud From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 2562 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (11 months 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 1438 times:

So, I might be asking for more info than I actually want here, but... did the momcat actually suckle the ducklings? If so, what instincts would have made the ducklings even try that? Don't baby birds get fed by their parents regurgitating for them?

The profile of one of the ducklings reminded me of the yellow dragon in the old Atari 2600 game... oy how much time did I waste back in the early '80s.

Oy.

[Edited 2013-05-23 22:43:08]


Pancakes are delicious.
User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5575 posts, RR: 32
Reply 3, posted (11 months 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 1421 times:

Quoting Airstud (Reply 2):
So, I might be asking for more info than I actually want here, but... did the momcat actually suckle the ducklings? If so, what instincts would have made the ducklings even try that

Yes, you can see it all in the video. According to the expert (Niall Hatch of Birdwatch Ireland -- I'm serious) ducklings latch on to the first thing they encounter after being hatched, so to them the cat is their mother. Ducks cannot suck, apparently, but they filter food through their beaks. They probably mimicked the kittens and biting gently on the nipple would give them some moisture. Ducklings don't need to be fed by their parents and can fend for themselves, so they are also foraging around for real food. Harder to explain is the cat's acceptance of the ducklings, but they put it down to the fact that the ducklings hatched the same time the kittens were born, at a time when the cat would have been particularly hormonal, so her maternal instincts took over. What could be a problem is that the ducklings will grown very quickly and she could reject -- or attack them. He said he's never come across anything like it before.


User currently offlineCPH-R From Denmark, joined May 2001, 5911 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (11 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 1393 times:

I'll take any excuse to post this link: http://new.livestream.com/FosterKittenCam/Mythbusters
A litter of 2 week old kittens currently being fostered. Warning: May contain cuteness overload  


User currently offlineAeroWesty From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 20322 posts, RR: 63
Reply 5, posted (11 months 1 day ago) and read 1333 times:

Quoting CPH-R (Reply 4):
I'll take any excuse to post this link:

Awwww, kitties.



International Homo of Mystery
User currently offlineConfuscius From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 3825 posts, RR: 1
Reply 6, posted (11 months 1 day ago) and read 1322 times:

Quoting Braybuddy (Thread starter):
Cat Adopts And Nurses Ducklings

The cat is just fattening up the duck for foie gras later.



Ain't I a stinker?
User currently offlineConfuscius From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 3825 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (10 months 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1025 times:

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 5):
Awwww, kitties.

Here's a tribute from Bullwinkle:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HqkbK90lGwY

more...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2LcMLqvOlBM


from wikipedia...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I_Love_Little_Pussy



Ain't I a stinker?
User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 18704 posts, RR: 58
Reply 8, posted (10 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 986 times:

This is remarkable. I always figured that suckling was a mammal-only reflex. Why would birds have a suckling reflex? I wonder how they react to milk. Probably not well, I'd imagine.

User currently offlineBraybuddy From Ireland, joined Aug 2004, 5575 posts, RR: 32
Reply 9, posted (10 months 3 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 914 times:

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 8):
Why would birds have a suckling reflex?

According to the experts Doc, the ducklings are mimicking the kittens' behaviour and managing to extract some moisture by biting gently on the nipple. That is not enough to sustain them, so they are also foraging around for real food. The ducklings will grow quickly, so it will be interesting to see the cat's reaction when they grow quite large, and edible.


User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 13804 posts, RR: 63
Reply 10, posted (10 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 897 times:

The cat will have adapted to the duck´s smell (and the duck will smell of cat as well), so the cat will probably take it as one of it´s own children. Similarly the duck will see itself as a cat.
I have read about a blackbird, which got similarly adopted by a cat (and imprinted on the cat). It was not considered food by it´s step mom, and, when out in the garden, the other blackbirds gave a danger call about the cat approaching, this blackbird went where it was safe: Between the paws of mommy cat.

Jan


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