If Tasha Reed tells you she has Chips and Salsa at home, she might not mean what you think.
She could be talking about snack foods. But she’s probably referring to the two ducklings she recently added to her animal family.
Reed, an animal law enforcement officer with the Humane Society of the Pikes Peak Region’s Pueblo division, rescued the ducklings about a week ago after she received a call from a woman who discovered them while hiking.
“She reported that the ducklings would walk up to people, which meant they were domesticated,” said Reed, a 4-year veteran of the humane society.
Domesticated ducklings don’t fare well in the wild, according to Humane Society spokeswoman Gretchen Pressley. They’re vulnerable to extreme weather conditions and can fall victim to starvation, disease, or attacks from predators.
As soon as she answered the call and met the ducklings, Reed, who already had five pet ducks at her home, knew she would be adding to her brood.
“As soon as we saw these guys, they walked right up to me, and I just fell in love,” Reed said, laughing. “They’re so cute. I mean, how could you say no to those faces?”
According to Reed, one of the ducks was eating chips when she found it, which is how she came up with the name.
“So, of course I had to name the other one Salsa,” she said.
Chips and Salsa are thriving in their new home, according to Reed. The older female ducks have welcomed them into their new family, and they get along swimmingly with Audi, Reed’s 6-year-old Husky.
“They lay all over him, and peck at his fur,” she said. “He just loves it.”
Chips, the more domesticated and outgoing of the two, likes to follow Reed around the house, she said. Salsa, a mallard, can be a little shy.
On most days, they spend the daylight hours outside with the adults, and they spend their nights in a coop – that is, when they’re not swimming in Reed’s bathtub or hanging out with their new canine brother.
“It’s been cool to watch them become a little integrated family,” Reed said.