The Duck That Wasnt Really a Duck

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We are caring and open and aim to put our supporters at the heart of everything we do. Each year we throw away about , tonnes of fresh fruit and vegetables with salad making up a large proportion of the waste. Armed with five different bags of lettuce, we visited the Grand Union Canal in Aylesbury to find out if the local ducks favoured one type of leaf over another. We visited a popular feeding spot and while someone had thoughtfully left some oats out for the birds, there was plenty of unhealthy white bread scattered along the towpath.

We thought our wholesome treats might be a tough sell with these particular birds. However, we were very pleased to be proved wrong….

The history of the Rubber Duck.

We tore these up into bite sized chunks and they proved highly popular straight away. Initially scared of the green leaves, the local ducks eventually came around to the idea of salad. It was a plucky female who first tried a piece, swiftly followed by some males and many other members of the flock. Perhaps with so many more exotic options being thrown their way iceberg was just too pedestrian for them on the day. The local swans did gobble up the leftovers though so nothing was wasted. The opportunistic swans, who were making the most of the free salad, also ignored an offering of watercress.

It turned out to be the biggest hit of the day. Aylesbury-based ducks clearly keep up with the latest food fashions. The swans were pretty partial to this brassica as well. If you want to try a duck taste-testing of your own, get yourself one of our free duck food pouches and head to your local waterway.


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GOPRO on a Duck!

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The duck and lettuce taste test

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This caused problems as the fragile heads constantly broke. There were more developments to this kind of toy before , when a patent was approved for a toy duck. Have you ever wondered why the rubber duck is particularly associated with bath time? The first toy attached to the tap nozzle, and sprayed water out of small holes in its back like a sprinkler, and then four years later, a duck was developed that had a propeller attached to the back.

After the second World War, Russian-American sculptor Peter Ganine, known more famously for his chess sets, submitted a patent for a duck ornament solely for playing purposes. Despite the lack of functions and attachments, this duck design was hugely popular, and a whopping 50 million were sold.

The Number Ones: Rick Dees And His Cast Of Idiots’ “Disco Duck (Part 1)” - Stereogum

The most recognisable rubber duck of today is a hybrid of these two historical designs. Ducks are reproduced in different colours, patterns, costumes, and even to resemble famous faces. Collecting ducks can become somewhat of an addiction, or perhaps an obligation, and in the B1 office alone we have The rubber duck has many accolades of its own. Ducks made news headlines in after 29, ducks fell off a cargo ship in the Pacific, some finally making it back to shore years after in locations across the globe. Chart success, near death experiences, brushes with royalty AND charity fundraising… These ducks are giving even Bob Geldof a run for his money.

And why not?


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It has no gender, no cultural ties, no age and is therefore accessible to everyone, without causing offense. With water play proven to aid muscle development, coordination and cognitive learning, the little rubber duck can inspire the young, as well as providing fun for us adults too. For full functionality of our site it is necessary to enable JavaScript. Here are the instructions how to enable JavaScript in your web browser.

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