I went looking for ducklings this past weekend, but did not find any. However, I have this one (thanks Wikimedia Commons) from the Southern Song Dynasty of China (1127–1279 AD). The Southern Song painters are said to have belonged to a tradition that wanted to foster societal change from the ground up, and thereby focusing on close, intimate subjects. I applaud a time and culture that believed the visual arts were a way to do this for everyone. Don't you just want to run out and tidy up your yard so this little guy could have a calm, clean place to grow up?
It dives in shallows for beakfuls of moss,
Heads to sandy isles to preen its feathers.
Ready to fly off all by itself,
It finds its reflection and lingers.
- "On a Lone Duck," Xiao Gang (6th century AD)