Adventures with Goats, Chickens and Ducks

Last weekend I had the chance to visit the beautiful animals at Eastwood Garden and Plant Centre. Eastwood is a Garden-Centre-come-Petting-Zoo, nestled in Wotton-under-Edge and is home to chickens, rabbits, Kune Kune pigs ducks and two rather lovely goats called Billy and Angus who were fond of being scratched behind the ears. Something I often forget about goats is that they have horizontally slit pupils, which means they have great peripheral depth perception, but it makes their eyes look a little rectangular and always seems strange when I get close but soon becomes quite normal.

There was great excitement over the ducks too. Daphne, Jackie, Mel and Mitch were Aylesbury ducks, Jemima-Puddle-Duck-type-ducks, and one of my favourite breeds. (On the Jemima Puddle-Duck note, I recently found out that Beatrix Potter based the story on a re-telling of Red Riding Hood, with tweaks to make it more suitable to her child-like audience.) All of the ducks at Eastwood were large with charmingly grubby white feathers and muddy orange feet, and started quacking simultaneously when I stood more than four steps away. Unfortunately it was one of those intensely grey days where the sky oozes a dark blue light and made photography harder than it should have been, so I am looking forward to visiting again on a brighter day!

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