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Posts Tagged ‘water fowl’

wood-ducks1

I spent the holiday weekend at my parents’ house, which lies adjacent to my grandparents’ property. On that property is a farm pond, which is surrounded by tall white pines.

Every year, a pair of wood ducks shows up to see if this pond might be a good place to nest. However, they soon discover that there are no hollow trees or nesting boxes, and they move on. I assume that this is always a different pair of wood ducks, because they have a high mortality in the wild.

Wood ducks, in case you didn’t know, are perching ducks. They require a hollow in a tree or a nest box to nest successfully. Because this pond has a grove of white pines surrounding it, the ducks are beguiled into landing there.

Because they nest in trees,, how do the little ducks get out of the nest and ont the ground? Like all ducks, wood duck chicks are precocial. They can follow their mothers a soon as they’ve hatched.

Well, they jump.

Watch:

Source.

I’m thinking about putting up a nest box in those pines next year to see if the ducks will nest there.

We once had a breeding colony of green herons that nested in those trees, and I’ve seen a few great blues there over the years. When I was about 3 or 4, there was a blue snow goose that landed there, too. There is a photo me looking at the bird from the pond’s edge. That bird probably got lost on his migration route.

I remember the first wood ducks I saw at that pond. My first golden, “Goldie,” flushed them. She had never seen waterfowl before, other than my tame muscovy duck. She thought they were some weird species of water pheasant.

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