Friday: Duck report

July 13, 2018 • 2:45 pm

It’s a steamy Friday, and the ducks are wilted, napping on their island. Their appetites even seem to have flagged, though they may just be foraging on their own. All eight ducklings are in good nick, and their wings are getting large; they even flap them just to test them out. It won’t be long now, and I wish dearly that I could see a duck’s first flight. That’s not likely, but I’m enjoying my last few weeks with them.

Here are a few pictures taken yesterday and today.

This is what I encountered yesterday morning after whistling. They all swam toward me in a line, with Honey bringing up the rear. I suspect Honey’s following position helps her keep a better eye on her brood.

Mealworm and duck pellet time. You can pick Honey out because of her whiter tail (top), but I swear that she’s not much larger than her offspring now.

Mom with her mottled bill. The black triangle at junction of the left side of her bill and her face is a distinguishing mark:

Mom watching her young ‘uns dabble and preen:

The Good Mother Duck. I think she looks fine—not too skinny since I’ve been feeding her up.

Spot the hen! I’m wondering if Honey hasn’t started her molt already, as that looks like a primary feather on the island behind her, and her wings look shorter. Birdy readers, what do you think?

Finally, feeding time in this morning’s darkness. Turtles abound, cleaning up the uneaten mealworms and pellets, so nothing is wasted. Can you spot Honey here?

And remember, on May 22 the ducklings looked like this:

12 thoughts on “Friday: Duck report

      1. Yes, probably. However, there are many species where the kids try to stick around until they’re pushed out by mom and/or pop. We are not alone in that.

        1. I have been watching a Family of Bald Eagles, the three Eaglets fledged about a month ago, but they are still hanging around and being fed by Mum, and they will try to take the fish out of her Talons in mid air. I suspect it won’t be long before they leave for good, once they have learned to Fish, and as the nest is next to a Trout Farm, they should soon learn.

  1. Its always tough to catch a child’s first step, I doubt that out of the dozens of cockatiels I’ve raised that I ever saw one’s first flight.

  2. I remember the heron that hanged around a while ago, harboring hopes for a duckling snack. Now, with their sizes, he wouldn’t bother even to slow down.

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