Mallard attrition

Here on the creek we get to see our mallards breed (Pal Nancy calls it “twitterpating”, which I think sums it up nicely) and then set forth with their brood a few weeks later. But it’s sad to see the numbers dwindle as the summer goes on – the mamas start with perhaps 5-6 babies but they’re soon down to 1,2 or maybe 3. I don’t know what takes these kids, although one year I rowed out and removed an oyster clamped on the foot (paw? paddle?) of a duckling – an oyster! Who knew?

Whatever, life, and death goes on, and the ducks seem to keep enough of themselves going to keep the water populated. It’s a fascinating thing to observe.

8 Comments

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8 responses to “Mallard attrition

  1. Polluted water maybe?

    The runoff in your pretty creek is festering with long hidden sewer pipes, chemical runoff from industry, and yes dumping by septic tank pumpers. They don’t all go to sewer treatment to dispose of waste and pocket this fee. It even happen in Greenwich. Surprised?

    • Heck when, in 1967, the town put in sewers on the street they looked to connect my grandmother’s septic system. No such thing – like everyone else on the creek, the sewage went straight out. Things have improved – the smell at low tide will tell you that – but sure, there’s still progress to be made.

  2. Cobra

    A few years ago, our backyard pond hosted a mallard family, including five ducklings to start. Over the course of the summer, the number of offspring steadily declined to zero, consumed by Rufus, our resident monster snapper. On two occasions I observed the tail-end duckling disappear under the water after a very short struggle. Such is nature.

  3. Walt

    So Dude –
    When did you become an aficionado of Duck porn? You have given up on the Japanese School Girl stuff you have been addicted to? Web feet and feathers top school girl plaid? To each his own, I guess. When you are watching the mallards do the nasty, do you dress up in a Duck suit to blend in? Do you quack loudly when you spank your bill? I have so many questions and so few answers. If I toss you bread crumbs, will you quack and roll on your back?
    Your Pal,
    Walt

  4. Walt

    Dude Man –
    This is why I love you and hate you. I write the stupidest, most sophomoric crap I can come up with, and YOU POST IT!! Delete that YOU MORON!! Have you no common sense, man? This is Greenwich, for Pete’s Sake. You can’t be talking about ducks F*&king. You will get me banned from RHC. Shunned at CVS. My bagel guy may snub me.
    Let’s talk about FAR. I don’t know what FAR is, but that won’t stop me from expressing an opinion. Name a topic, and I can opine on it. Facts and knowledge are way overrated. You know that. You dummy.
    Anyhows, I assume the BBQ is tomorrow, right? Good thing, because today was a total washout. But I used the rain day productively. I made road kill appetizers. And dead deer main course!! What time should I show up? Should I bring anything else? Who else is coming? You have any hotties lined up? I hope so, you loser. Greenwich Gal seems like fun. Ask her. And get Wil Morton there. His ribs sound good.
    And if you serve the blue fish dip, you may be charged with involuntary manslaughter, so stay away from that. Call me if you need anything else.
    Your Pal,
    Walt

  5. Greenwich Gal

    Walt – I am DAMN fun…that is why I am married to a financier and living high on the hog, sugar pie!
    Now, tell me who the hell you are. We just might know each other, maybe.

  6. Peter Brunt-Movie Producer

    “Do you quack loudly when you spank your bill?”

    Marvelous, Walt baby. Simply Marvelous.