Ducks are visiting each morning but only for a few minutes. One did spend an hour in West nest box today, but no eggs. So who’s Arabelle? She’s a duck that nested here last year. Others have returned too, I’m sure, but it’s hard to tell them apart. She’s easy to recognize so we got to “know” her. We called her “arrow” or “arrow bill” for a while – see the picture – and the latter evolved into Arabelle.
There were two hens in the West nest at 10:00 today. They squabbled a bit at first but then settled down quietly and even seemed kind of affectionate. Below one is gently nibbling the other. After a couple of minutes the second one left again. The first remained in the nest box for an hour resting, often closing her eyes. I checked the nest after she left: no eggs yet. Her mate stayed on the roof of the nest box during most of this time.
If you watch the live cameras it’s very hard to see anything interesting right now. This early in the season it’s normal for the hens to drop in for just a few minutes, rummage around a bit to check things out, and then leave. But the cameras use motion to trigger a recording and it’s easy for me to find the those few minutes, so I’ve created a short video of what was happening yesterday. Today was similar, although yesterday there was an extra visitor! …
On Saturday we had not seen any wood ducks, but suddenly on Sunday there were 7 in the back yard: 4 males and 3 females.
2019 Wood Ducks Blog – start