The Mallard Duck
I saw this drake Mallard in my back yard one early evening. I snapped that particular picture through my window. Imagine my surprise as I live about a half-mile from the nearest pond or lake. After having seen this duck, I noticed that there have been a few of these ducks roaming around this neighborhood in the last couple of weeks. Perhaps in search of a honey or maybe just different food? Who can say.
I spotted the Killdeer, Tri-colored Heron and the Great Egret at Santiago Golf Course pond, and the Wood Duck drake at Paradise Lake at Boone Park in The Villages, Florida. This Wood Duck is one of the few Wood Ducks I have ever seen in The Villages.
Please click on the thumbnail image to see the slightly larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
A Tri-colored Heron at Santiago Golf Course Pond
A Great Egret Hunts
A Great Egret at Santiago Golf Course Pond
A Killdeer at Santiago Golf Course
Canada Geese at Boone Park
A Wood Duck at Boone Park
It has been quite rainy for the past couple of days here, and now it is snowing lightly. The pond is full and there have been an assortment of visiting waterfowl here. I took these pictures through my windows yesterday morning. Sorry for the poor quality of the pictures but it was very dim, rainy and I had to deal with those window panes. I saw a Great Blue Heron, a small flock of Canada Geese, several Mallard Ducks, a drake (male) Wood Duck and a drake Red-head Duck. At times, the geese crowded out the ducks, and at times, the heron asserted itself and also kept the ducks at bay. It was an interesting interplay between the heron, geese, and those ducks! All were seeking a safe harbor from the stormy weather. All also were interested in eating. The Mallards and geese are vegetarians. The heron, Red-head, and Wood Duck all enjoy insects, small fish, amphibians and other small pond animals. I was quite thrilled to see the Wood Duck and that Red-head Duck here. It is likely that I will get to see many other visitors as the season progresses. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger picture. Enjoy!
The Wood Duck duckling that was born here a couple of months ago, has been out paddling on the lake on its own recently. I have seen it just at the shoreline. This duckling has found that staying close to the shore and under the docks, is a safe haven from the ever present predators such as Bald Eagles, and Great Blue Herons. The duckling is about like a human teenager who is in high school and out in the world more and more on his own. Wood Ducks are shy and don’t like being around people at all. They mostly eat acorns, seeds, and insects, but also will eat small aquatic animals. It won’t be long until this duckling is able to confidently fly with its small flock. We only have a few of these most colorful ducks here on our lake. They are treasured, indeed! Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger version of the picture. Enjoy!
I took these pictures of an American Coot and a charming pair of Wood Ducks a couple of days ago here on the neighborhood lake. The birds are compatible and seemed to not mind being together. The couple look rather romantic and the Coot is just following along. Please click on the thumbnail image to see the larger version of the picture. Enjoy!