Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Bleached Baby Ducks

We had some baby ducks and their parents visit our pool for a little swimming lesson.


Six chicks in all, not doing so well at getting out of the pool. Only two could get out consistently.


Mom had to keep jumping in to show them how it's done, and every time she jumped in, any chicks that made it out followed her back in the water.





They finally all got out.



Then there was trouble getting out of the gate.



Mom and Dad took them back home, across the street.



We went to visit them a couple of days after their swimming lesson, and only two had survived. The lady that lives in front of their pond told us that she saw raccoons get 2, 1 just disappeared and she found one badly injured that she was trying to rehabilitate on her own.

Only these little guys survived.




They had gotten to be really fast little swimmers, but they liked to run off on their own. Needless to say, they were gone a couple of days later, too. On the plus side, the other mallard mother that shares the pond had all 12 in her clutch survive. They were fledging and getting ready to leave the nest, according to the woman in the house.

11 comments:

Rajesh said...

Beautiful series of shots. It is like a story in pictures.

Kelly said...

...how cute!! We had the same thing happen to us, but our chicks couldn't get out at all. We ended up putting wooden boards in and they all walked the plank (by following breadcrumbs) to get out! Love your photos of the sweeties...it's so hard for them to make it in the world. I'm glad the other mama's babies were doing well.

Steve said...

Nice photos and the event was entertaining.

dAwN said...

Great series! So sad that many didnt survive.

Ginnymo said...

What a cute post Rene!! The babies are so cute. It is so sad when you find out that some didn't make it. They seem so tiny to be out there in the world. Your photos are beautiful!!

Chris Petrak said...

Wonderful series - but also makes you wonder what happened to the others - turtles take a lot of ducklings grabbing them from below. Wonder if that is what happened. Also interesting that Dad was still around - Mr. Mallard often does just one thing, then goes off with the boys. Nice post

Ratty said...

These are excellent shots of the little ducks. I just got some good ones of some babies today, but mine pale in comparison.

Rene said...

Thanks guys.

Chris - I had no idea turtles ate baby ducks! What size turtles? I think the pond is too small and way too shallow for turtles. Calling it a pond is very generous, but there are a lot of other predators. There are a ton of feral cats and lots of raccoons. The neighbor lady said the raccoon she saw had a duckling in each paw. :(

Rene said...

Kelly - They raised the water level for the babies and put a boogie board in the water, but they eventually got out on their own.

crazy57bus said...

What a beautiful and wonderful series of pictures, but so sad that none of the babies survived. I was walking Lake Merritt and saw a seagull shake a baby duck to death and then try to eat it. The predators of ducklings are so abundant.

Shellmo said...

These are amazing - would make a wonderful book / story. Sad that only 2 made it.