What a lovely picture of this duck family, Peter! The mother must be very busy to take care of her 8 ducklings! That's not easy! Best wishes, Anne
Thats a good crop Peter.
Was this taken recently - I am interested in the timing. Here the first hatching, they are almost fully grown now.
They are hard to photograph as they don't keep very still for no one!
You have got me thinking now
Looking on the net it seems to be that the Mallard has one nest per year, two being quite rare. Now three weeks before the picture was taken I saw chicks of a similar size, and on the day of the picture (10th June) I also saw a Mallard with very large chicks. I think there must be a range of about a month in the start of the breeding season. I will keep an eye out to see if there are any others about on this canal.
Incidentally, last week I saw a Moorhen with 5 chicks but they scarpered quickly while the mother came quite close. I suspect that the Moorhens are becoming much less afraid of us humans and follow the Mallards after their share of the bread.
On the subject of breeding, we passed this lake in Sandwell a few years ago. It is not a good shot but it was in February and we were amazed to sit and watch the Herons feeding their chicks.
All the best Peter
Ps… yesterday on this canal I saw 3 Moorhen chicks hanging around with the Mallards, could not see the mother but all were happy!
So they are maybe later over here (UK) than over there (USA) ! Given the heat this year (what a HOT week) I think they'll be OK now.
I have never seen heron's with chicks at all Peter I think we have assumed they were there, 100 feet up in the nests, but never seen them. The only consistent heronry that we knew about has gone due to the presence of a bald eagle this year.
All the best from Oxfordshire -Jethro-
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Photo taken in Lower Penn, Staffordshire, UK
Misplaced? Suggest new location