Monday, October 16, 2006
Previously (August 9) I had expressed delight in the nest Lady M had made behind a bush in front of my house. She deposited 5 eggs there and several of us in the neighborhood dared to anticipate ducklings. Others dissed Lady M saying last year she had failed in her maternal duties.
Well, the nay-sayers were right! And I'm giving serious to changing her name to Naughty Lady. The truth is that she did not like being separated from her four male mates. She was diligent to make the nest and deposit the eggs there and I think she really intended to follow through with them. For several days the male mallards hung around the house, giving her moral support while she was doing her duty. Once I even found her companions asleep in the middle of the nearby road and tried unsuccessfully to urge them our of danger back to the grass.
DISHARMONY AMONG DUCKS
Then came the day my husband heard her screeching, squawking and carrying on. This was all directed at her male companions who had deserted her and gone for a swim in the lake. Contritely, they started toward her. She then thumbed her nose (beak) at them and flew petutantly away. That was the end of the lonesome duty of nest setting. The whole bunch of them not only abandoned the nest but this whole end of the lake for some time.
A sad ending to our hopes and dreams of fuzzy little Mallard ducklings to repopulate our lake! I'm not sure I dare to hope that next year will be any better...Well, maybe she is entitled to three tries before being ruled "out."
Top Photo by hddod @flickr CC
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