Readers’ wildlife photos

July 9, 2023 • 8:15 am

Today is Sunday, ergo John Avise is here with a particularly winsome batch of baby birds, including two species of DUCKS.  John’s captions are indented, and you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them.

Baby Birds 

Depending on the species, avian babies come in several types ranging between two extremes: precocial and altricial.  Precocial chicks typically hatch with a full set of downy feathers and quickly leave the nest to feed and fend for themselves (often with parental guidance).  By contrast, altricial young hatch nearly naked and helpless, and require intensive care and feeding by their parents until they grow more feathers and eventually fledge.  Precocial babies can be very cute, whereas altricial babies often tend to be– well, rather ugly.  This week’s post shows several examples of cute and not-so-cute avian babies and other youngsters.

Barn Swallow chick (Hirundo rustica):

Tree Swallow chicks begging for food (Tachycineta bicolor):

Least Tern chick (Sternula antillarum):

Least Tern slightly older chick:

Least Tern teenager:

Snowy Plover chick (Charadrius nivosus):

California Quail chicks (Callipepla californica):

Mallard young chick (Anas platyrhynchos):

Mallard older ducklings swimming:

Ruddy Duck chick (Oxyura jamaicensis):

Canada Goose young gosling (Branta canadensis):

Canada Goose slightly older goslings:

Canada Goose teenager:

Eqyptian Goose chick (Alopochen aegyptiaca):

Egyptian Goose goslings swimming:

Eqyptian Goose teenager:

5 thoughts on “Readers’ wildlife photos

  1. I think they’re all cute, even the “ugly altricials” 🙂
    And that teenage Canada goose is the epitome of an adolescent: awkward!
    Thanks for this excellent set; I also didn’t know about precocial vs. altricial chicks. Neat!

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