Sunday, April 27, 2008

Wood Ducks


To my way of thinking Wood Ducks are the most magnificent looking of duck species. The male, shown above, is multi-coloured and distinctly patterned and cannot be mistaken for any other species. The female also is very distinctive with her large, elongated white patch around her eyes.
Another unique feature of Wood Ducks is that they are perching ducks and they nest in trees cavities found in trees situated above water. As soon after their eggs are hatched the young baby ducks are coaxed out of the nest and are encouraged to jump down into the water, by the female Wood Duck, whom is waiting below. Other than encourage -ment the female Wood Duck gives no other help. This duck species produces two broods a year and this also makes them unique among other duck species in North America. This photo, of two males, following a female is rather misleading for it might suggest to some that this is of a pursuit of a female by two males in search of a mate. In actual fact though, in most cases Wood Ducks pair up in January and mates have already been chosen long before they reach our region.

12 comments:

bobbie said...

I did not realize that wood ducks nest in trees. I'd love to see some of the younguns leaving the nest!

Mary said...

They certainly have an intersting mix of colors and patterns. Sort of like making a scrap quilt out of your left over pieces...a little bit of this, a little bit of that :-) I didn't realize any duck nested in a tree! I would love to see them leaving the nest, too. Must be hard to always find a good tree with a nice place to drop down into the water!

me and my camera said...

bobbie:
I've never seen that either, but like you, I'd love too. that would definitely be a lucky day to get such a picture.

mary:
You could sure work some of your quilt magic with this one. I can visualize all sorts of fabrics for the female but the white eye would remain its uniform characteristic no matter what colours or designs you chose. The male is really astounding when you see one in person for I don't think these particular photos do it justice.

Kingsdowner said...

Lovely ducks, and favourites in wildfowl collections here. I assume that the chicks tumble out unceremoniously?

me and my camera said...

kingsdowner:
Probably a bit haphazardly as well with no help from Mamma Duck. This is my favourite duck species and fortunatly for me I see them quite often.

Sandpiper said...

Wow! Fantastic pictures! Probably our most beautiful ducks! I love all the different scenes! Great post! Thank you for sharing.

Stacey Huston said...

Great post. Can honestly say I have NEVER seen one in a tree.. thanks for sharing

Tony Morris said...

hi, did you know that the "Morning Cloak" is a rare butterfly in the UK known by the name "Camberwell Beauty"? The name originated from the discovery of two individuals at Coldharbour Lane in Camberwell in 1748.It's near the London Docks and the two were probably stowaways from mainland Europe!

me and my camera said...

stacey:
Seeing a duck perched in a tree seems to be quite a surprise for most people!

tony morris:
tony I have pasted this comment in the comments of my post on 'blossoms and butterflies' as I think you perhaps meant it to apply to that post. An interesting anecdote to the Uk name for this butterfly.

RuthieJ said...

Those are really nice pictures. I like the wood ducks too and have finally learned to recognize their unusual call when I'm out in the woods

me and my camera said...

They're pretty fascinating and I found another beautiful pair today which I have put on as my title banner. Glad that you enjoyed.

Mo said...

Lovely wood duck.