Mama duck Lucy is a P.E.I. garden centre celebrity
A black duck mother awaits arrival of nine ducklings among the perennials at a Charlottetown garden store
Staff and customers at a Charlottetown, P.E.I., garden centre are anxiously awaiting the arrival of a special delivery.
Lucy the black duck has laid nine eggs in a unique location and is expected to hatch her ducklings any day.
Lucy built her nest under the hanging plants on a table in the Atlantic Superstore Garden Centre.
"Actually, there's been a few customers that have come over and looked over beside her and I've warned them, 'Just be careful of the duck,' and they kind of look at me like what are you talking about and then you show them … she's a real one," said garden centre employee Heather Warren.
We're all waiting to be grandparents.- Heather Warren
Staff believe Lucy is the same duck that has been returning and making a nest in or around the garden centre for the last six years.
Protection from predators
"It's part of our garden centre now. Every year when we open up the first few weeks we open, we enjoy Lucy and her eggs," said Superstore manager Terry Kyle.
"People come in they take lots of pictures, and it's something to see, you don't see it every day."
Customers keep coming back to check on Lucy and her eggs, the first time she has laid that many,
"There's a few that have been checking back every week, just to see how she's getting along or every couple of days just to see how things are going and checking up on her. We're all waiting to become grandparents," said Warren.
Wildlife biologists say black ducks are well-adapted to urban settings and aren't bothered by people. The garden centre also protects her from predators.
Once Lucy's eggs hatch in about a week, the mother duck and her ducklings will then have to go across the parking lot and busy streets until they reach water.