Monday ducks: The glory that is Frisky

October 19, 2020 • 1:00 pm

Frisky, the Botany Pond male wood duck (Aix sponsa), is still with us, though other woodies come and go. Frisky is pretty much in his full breeding plumage now, and he’s a sight to behold! These photos were taken yesterday and today.

Frisky has put on some weight since he arrived, but that’s good. He needs it for winter or for migration. (The woodies sometimes stay north, but they won’t stay here, for the pond will freeze and I’ll stop feeding the ducks soon.)


They’re called wood ducks because they perch (and nest) in trees. Frisky likes the feel of wood under his feet, and so perches on the cypress knees:

A living jewel:

And Honey is still here. She’s found herself a new boyfriend, the biggest and handsomest drake in the pond. He’s called Leviathan because of his size:


15 thoughts on “Monday ducks: The glory that is Frisky

  1. Question; in Mallards, is drake size a factor in a hen’s selection? I assume their coloration and behaviors are central to her choice too (I understand that in the duck world sometimes hens have no choice).

    1. I have no idea what characters hens use now to choose partners. Yes, sometimes there is forced copulation of females, but look, the males wouldn’t have those colors unless the females chose them, so I suspect that size (males are bigger than females) as well as bill color, head color, body color, and all the other ornaments of a drake in breeding plumage have been the object of female choice.

      1. I’ve been wondering if Honey’s (apparent – really with Jerry’s help) ability to fledge so many of her ducklings helps her attract the best mates.

        1. I think so. They routinely consult on this very issue while dabbling. The boys talk among themselves while the girls tell all in their own clutches. By breeding season everybody knows the score.

  2. Frisky is looking great in the plumage department. He looks pretty round in some of those shots. Is it possible that he gets so big that flying is difficult?

  3. What a beautiful presence at your pond, Jerry! I hope Frisky and Blockhead return next Spring. I’m sure Honey will return as long as she’s able to, as she’s got a good thing going with her very kind benefactor.

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