Posted by: atowhee | June 2, 2020

UGLY DUCKLING…AND BEYOND

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This image was captured by Kirk Gooding in southern Oregon.  I do know that some species of waterfowl are notorious for laying their eggs in another species’ nest.  All comments or observations welcomed.

Here is Kirk’s email that came with the photo:  “What’s your take on this curious family of mallards? Has this subspecies of Canada Goose been raised by momma Mallard? Its behavior seemed to mimic the kids as they froze as we approached in the car and then later skedaddled and froze in the bulrushes with the tiny ones hidden and only the Goose’s butt being seen.I hypothesize that this goose imprinted on the mallard way back when.”

UPDATE:

One OBOL participant sent me this note: “John Eade is a professor at UC Davis doing extensive detailed study of Wood Duck nesting. According to him there are 245 species of waterfowl on Earth and nearly ever species has been documented to lay eggs in another bird’s nest.”

Another suggested we all go re-read The Ugly Duckling.

A third sent this line: Last month’s National Wildlife [magazine?] had a pair of Sandhills raising a Canada gosling.
I tried to use the NWF website but it seemed hopeless.

 


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