There are two grey female Muscovies remaining. The rest went back to where they came from. There were simply too many of them to be sustainable within the area we have. However, history may be about to repeat itself . . .

Trevor the (female) Mallard is being followed around by eleven ducklings - being Pekin/Mallard crosses. The Khaki Campbell had ten, but is now down to nine, after I found one dead, floating in the pond.

There does seem to often be some unpleasant inter-generational aggression involving the ducklings. Given there's no food shortage, it seems quite needless. The dead duckling may have been a casualty of that squabbling.

Lucy tried incubating some infertile eggs, until I took pity on her and removed them.

We launched the dinghy a week ago, to pull up the pump and clear the screen. The flow of water through the flowforms has improved, markedly. As has the reduced turbidity from fewer Muscovies.

Summer is upon us and there is all the usual seasonal chores. The main one is replacing batteries and re-programming everything to do with irrigation. Just when I thought that I had the irrigation more or less under control . . . I looked out the carport door this morning to see a gusher atop the shed.

A 19mm aerial irrigation pipe had ruptured. So I turned that off and set about the repair. It's what's called thinwall or lateral pipe, made from alkathene. A section of around three feet long was brittle. I found that out as I sought to cut a neat end in the pipe to put in a joiner, only to see it split, shatter or crack, with each cut. By the time I'd cut back four inch sections until I'd got out of the brittle part, I needed a three foot length of replacement pipe and two joiners.

Well, the timers and automation part seem O.K. so far anyway . . . (fingers crossed)

The pond is still getting a top up for an hour, as part of the daily irrigation cycle. Probably around 3,000 gallons - maybe 3,500.