(Sorry about the title. It should have pigs and not pits. Oh, well, too late. It's published, as is...)
On one of my adventure walks, which happens to be near the street I live on, I came across a pair of pot-belly pigs that had gotten out of a front yard pen and were crossing the street. Since I wasn’t familiar with pot-belly pigs, I didn’t know if they would attack me or not. Both came up close to my legs and appeared friendly. They were making quiet, satisfied noises and just simply wanted to cross the street.
It didn’t take long for their owner to notice they had gotten loose. An attractive woman came out of her house to get her pigs back. The first thing she said, “They won’t hurt you. They’re very friendly.” My son was with me at the time and stated that pigs were very intelligent. I discovered later that pot-belly pigs are communicative and affectionate, too. In other words, they make great pets.
About a week later, I decided to ask the owner of the pot-belly pigs if I could take a picture of them, while they were in their front yard pen. Their owner was very friendly and allowed me to come into her yard to take several pictures. At first, I didn’t notice the two ducks that were in the pen with the pot-belly pigs. I thought that was quite interesting, since the pigs and the ducks got along quite well.
The two ducks didn’t look like any ducks I’ve seen before and so I had to ask about them. They were Acona ducks. The owner had a male and a female and was hoping that the female would eventually produce eggs. I didn’t ask if the eggs were for eating, breeding, or both. I decided to do a little research about this duck and this is what I discovered:
The Acona is a hardy, adaptable, all-purpose duck. It is an excellent layer, typically laying 210-280 white, cream, or blue eggs yearly. The Ancona also grows relatively quickly, and produces high quality meat that is more flavorful and less fatty than that of most Pekin ducks. Anconas are well suited for situations where they can forage for some of their food and are capable of eating large "banana" slugs. "They make excellent pond or yard ducks since they tend to stay close to home, do not fly under normal conditions and are large enough so that they are less likely to be preyed upon by winged predators. Typically they have moderately calm temperaments and make fine pets." (Holderread, 2001)
The Acona duck is considered a rare breed. The Acona duck is designated as “critically endangered” by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy https://livestockconservancy.org/index.php/heritage/internal/anconaduck and are in need of more conservation breeders.
I will do a follow-up story about these two Acona ducks, in the near future.