A surfing duck who loves hanging ten at Bargara is catching the attention of locals and visitors alike when he goes for a paddle on his special boogie board with owner Tracey Ratcliffe.
The one-year-old Welsh Harlequin drake goes by the name of Wilbur and has been Tracy's shadown ever since she brought him home from Blue Haven Poultry seven months ago.
“Wilbur is a funny guy, he can be quite cheeky at home and sometimes when he's out with us either surfing or having a barbecue,” Tracy said.
“But overall, Wilbur is a very well behaved and placid boy.”
The local woman realised Wilbur had a passion for surfing when she recalled stories of a similar duck owned by a family member.
“My stepmother had a duck that she used to take to the beach when she was a child and I fondly remember her telling me about how much her duck loved it,” Tracy said.
“I wondered if Wilbur would enjoy the beach as he loves his swimming pool at home, so I made him a harness for his safety.
“I took him down to Bargara and he loved it! He even body surfed the waves.”
Tracy said she then introduced Wilbur to his very own mini boogie board after he took a liking to her granddaughter's gear.
“I take him on his board now and he absolutely loves it and jumps on and off it himself,” she said.
“People react quite positively to him, they take photos, videos and some have even have a cuddle.
“I love seeing the happiness on people's faces when they meet him, I've had a few say it's made their day – I love that and Wilbur doesn't seem to mind either.”
Tracy said she had always had a special bond with animals, with Wilbur the surfing duck not the only bird she had found a connection with.
Edna, a Bantam Frizzle chicken, is spreading love whenever Tracy takes her to the local nursing home where her father lives.
“Edna is so sweet and gentle natured, she's only a tiny little girl,” Tracy said.
“With my father having dementia and recently going into care I thought little Edna may bring joy to him and the other residents at the nursing home.
“She has a chicken nappy and a pet pram, mainly for the residents so they don't get pooped on.
“Seeing the joy on their faces is so sweet, they get to open up and tell me stories about the pets they used to own, it is wonderful.”
Tracy said she thoroughly enjoyed spreading joy to others, and that was made all the more easier with Wilbur and Edna by her side.
“I love meeting people and love seeing the joy our animal friends bring to people,” she said.
“They are the best therapy and really are a blessing.”
Keep up to date with Wilbur the surfing duck on his Facebook page.
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