Dabbling Ducks

All along the backwater,

Through the rushes tall,

Ducks are a-dabbling,

Up tails all!

 

Ducks’ tails, drakes’ tails,

Yellow feet a-quiver,

Yellow bills all out of sight

Busy in the river!

from The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame

falcated duck

falcated duck

DSCF8179

Falcated Ducks are dabblers, eating mostly vegetation and small insects close to the surface of the water rather than diving to the bottom for food.

The male bird is unmistakable with its vermiculated grey plumage

DSCF8179 (2)

and its striking green collar and brown crown.

DSCF8179 (3)

They are so named for the sickle-shaped, black and white inner wing feathers of the male, that are said to resemble the shape of a falcon’s beak.    These wetland birds are on the near-threatened list.  They are hunted as much as for their plumage as they are for food.

DSCF7991

The photos were taken yesterday at Martin Mere Wetland Centre.

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “Dabbling Ducks

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s