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June 20, 2004

Duck ... Duck ...

... DUCK!

These photos were taken Friday night:


This is a photo of the male ducks that are around. Usually there's 5-6 sunning themselves on the banks of the pond, or finding shade underneath a tree. They don't hang out with the ducklings/mama at all, though. You can see in the photo that they're losing their winter breeding plumage (the dark blue-green head and silver grey breast) that is synonymous with male mallards. During the summer male mallards actually lose their feathers and replace them with ones that make them look almost like female mallards (the brown striped feathers). For about a week while this is happening, they can't fly.


And here are the babies! Although as you can see, they're not really babies any more. They're a little bit bigger than pigeons at the moment, and they look just like their mama. The ducklings have lost almost all of their down - you can see individual bits of it still sticking up on some of the ducklings - and replaced it with feathers. It will still be a few more weeks before they can fly, though.


This is about as close as the ducklings/drakes ever get - when they're strapping on the feed bag. And if the ducklings get too close, they get a little peck from one of the drakes. The male ducks are greedy bastards!


The ducklings still love their mama the most. But I think I'm a close second, because I protect them from rock-throwing kids, drunk guys, and hawks. Oh, and I give them food.

Posted by Highwaygirl on June 20, 2004 09:28 AM to the category Animals

Aw! So. Cute.

Posted by: rappy at June 20, 2004 12:06 PM

They're growing up so fast...

Posted by: KatJam at June 21, 2004 09:20 AM

So sweet! I'm happy to see mama and duckies doing so well.

Posted by: lifeonhold at June 21, 2004 09:55 AM
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