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Ducken lives on

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J.D. Fitzgerald/The Explorer

Ducken, who was once believed to be half rooster and half duck is all duck, and is still quacking. Above, five-day-old Ducken waddles around as just a duckling in May. At left, Ducken has clearly grown into a duck, while still having the abnormality growing from the side of his head.The Story of Ducken was one of the most read on The Explorer website in 2012, even reaching a television station in Brazil.

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That’s not only a blessing, but a bit of a surprise to Patricia Rydeen, owner of the Marana bird farm known as Pats’ Ears Wings N’ Things.

Now about seven months old, Ducken was initially considered by Rydeen to be a hybrid rooster-duck after she saw one of her roosters mating with a duck.

The assumed result was Ducken, who was born with what appears to be a chicken leg protruding from his head, and whom Rydeen did not expect to live long based on the deformity and seemingly impossible chemistry behind his birth.

But Ducken defied the odds; his unbalanced footsteps leading him one waddle after another toward a prosperous future.

Sure, Ducken has had his mishaps – like the time he accidentally drowned a female duck while trying to mate with her in a pond, or the time his dinner came out during a photo shoot – but he’s doing what he can with what he’s got.

One thing does call for clarification, however.

On a follow-up interview with Rydeen, it had since been discovered that Ducken is actually not what he was once thought to be.

“Ducken is actually a male duck,” said Rydeen, who was informed by the president of an unnamed bird club that it was impossible for a rooster and duck to mate. “It ended up that two male ducks had mated with one female, and both sperms went into the egg.”

Despite his deformity and difficulty balancing, Ducken is likely proud to have three parents, regardless of his two fathers’ love debacle over his feather-flaunting mother.

Thus, Ducken has no need to be the most handsome or the most coordinated bird on the farm. He has a lot going for him. He has grown to the size of a normal duck. He eats, sleeps and mates just fine (despite one slip-up), he’s social enough, and he seems content. He’s even popular, here and across nation’s borders, where his original video found a huge following on YouTube after it was broadcasted on a television show in Brazil.

All Ducken can be… is Ducken.

And, regardless of his true heritage, Ducken’s hybrid name won’t be changing.

“I’ll still call him Ducken,” said Rydeen. “The name will stay.”

And why shouldn’t it?

2 images

J.D. Fitzgerald/The Explorer

Ducken, who was once believed to be half rooster and half duck is all duck, and is still quacking. Above, five-day-old Ducken waddles around as just a duckling in May. At left, Ducken has clearly grown into a duck, while still having the abnormality growing from the side of his head.The Story of Ducken was one of the most read on The Explorer website in 2012, even reaching a television station in Brazil.

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