Early Saturday morning, farmer Guido Dieck woke up to check on his flock of 150 ducks – only to find that nearly a third of them were missing.
“When I went to go feed them, almost all of them were gone,” Dieck told Berlin tabloid newspaper BZ. “It immediately brought tears to my eyes.”
Someone had stolen 43 ducks overnight from Dieck's farm in Wusterhausen, a small town northwest of Berlin in Brandenburg.
Each of the ducks had been ordered by a customer to be the centrepiece of their Christmas dinner.
“We suspect that they were stolen because it's Christmastime and the thief wanted to sell them,” a Brandenburg police spokesman told The Local.
“Forty-three ducks is a bit too much to eat by yourself.”
Police said that though these cases do not happen often, someone also stole about 90 ducks from the same farm last year in December. Dieck told BZ that 15 rabbits were also snatched that year.
Dieck's clients will be out of luck for having Christmas duck this year, but he said he could still sell off his 30 geese.