Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Fishing...Mallard Style

There are a lot of pictures for this post, but this particular event went on for so long that I had to use more photos than usual to adequately cover it. And these are only some of the pictures.

A mallard drake had a fish which, unfortunately, he dropped in the midst of some other ducks. A hen quickly scooped it up and that began a ten minute one-duck comedy act. It was one of the darnedest things I've seen in a long time! She would fly from the ice to the open water. Then she'd fly back onto the ice. Then back into the water. She got stuck momentarily one time trying to get back on the ice. At one point, she dropped the fish on the ice and when she tried to grab it, the fish slid around like a hockey puck. Then it was back into the water where she dropped it again and had to dive for it. Then she was back on the ice. In one photo, you can see where she has the fish in position to swallow it, but she doesn't. I think she was so worried about one of the other ducks stealing it that she wouldn't stop long enough to just gulp it down and be done.

Finally, after waddling, swimming, and flying around like she was jacked up on Mountain Dew and Pixie Sticks, she flew off and landed in open water away from the other ducks to eat the silly fish in peace.

Here is where she first picked up the fish after it was dropped by the drake on the ice.





This was the first time she got in the water.



Here she decided to get out of the water and back on the ice and got stuck briefly in the process.






At this point, she lost the fish and was trying to pick it back up, but it kept sliding around.





She finally managed picked it up again and decided to head back to open water.





Back on the ice.



Now back in the water where she drops it again and has to go after it.






And back on the ice.




Yup, back in the water.



How about we do the ice one more time?



FINALLY, (cue "Hallelujah Chorus" music here) she decided to fly off away from the other ducks and finish the hockey puck/football/fish once and for all.





29 comments:

Nature Rambles said...

Absolutely loved the series of shots! Whew! She did have the fish finally! (Hallelujah)

Martha Z said...

Great series and I learned something new, I didn't know mallards ate fish.

Samantha said...

Good Lord, girlfriend..just eat the dang thing already!!

TexWisGirl said...

love the 'dancing feet' in the 2nd last shot and all the great reflections off the ice. a little neurosis with your meal helps you digest, i think!

i prefer to be jacked up on diet coke and jolly ranchers (a line from 'barnyard' - who knew sam elliott could play a bull with udders?)

great job shooting this fiasco, but glad she was successful! even if she was a thief to begin with!

Gary said...

Great series!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Andrew said...

Fantastic images of the whole event Brian.. I have never seen a Mallard capture a fish before..
Many thanks for sharing your wonderful images..

Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

Oh I can see that being a hoot to watch. Wonderful job capturing the whole dramatic comedy routine. Pictures are great and I like the one where the male appears to be laughing at her. Well done.

mick said...

A great series of photos and a very amusing event to watch.

Nancy @ A Rural Journal said...

This must have been so fun to watch in person -- I would have been laughing so hard, I doubt I would have kept the camera still enough to shoot. :)

Modesto Viegas said...

Great series in a very good post!!

Sall's Country Life said...

Unbelievable! That girl's got tenacity, I'd eat sushi with her any day! Fun post Brian!!

Joe said...

Great series!!

Carole Meisenhelter said...

what a tale! You had quite the show happening there for you and your camera that's for sure Brian. Great photos!

Mel said...

Great work, Brian, catching it all for the rest of us to read about and look at "almost" live action!

holdingmoments said...

Amazing set of pictures.

I've never seen a Mallard eat a fish before, ever.

Pieces of Sunshine said...

Great series!

Liz said...

What a wonderful series of shots Brian! Great action shots. It must have been awesome to watch this show and more satisfying to capture it.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Brian, these are brilliant, and you and the Mallard Dick were both the patient ones. Wow, what a marvelous series of great action shots~

NicoleB said...

What a story and pictures to go with it!
Thanks for the smile on my face (and the good laugh) and also for the education along the way. It so far eluded my knowledge that ducks eat fish. Dooh :-D
Wonderful photos!

joo said...

What a beautiful set of photos!

Mama Zen said...

Marvelous shots!

NatureFootstep said...

I would have loved to see this. I bet it gave you a lifelong nice memory. If you have a bad day just think of this and you smile.

raf said...

A super series of pix, BJK, and delightfully told story!

Springman said...

Wow Brian, once again you knock it out of the park! This was one of those times where you just can't believe what your seeing. And...if your not out there with camera in hand these divine photos don't get taken. This is the stuff I love. Thanks for sharing your experiences and incredible photography!

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Kathiesbirds said...

Wonderful series. It is so hilarious! She worked awfully hard for that morsel! I wonder if she burned up all the energy that she will get from eating it just trying to eat it! BTW, that second to the last shot with her feet askew in the air makes me think of the Lipizzaner stallions and their "Airs Above the Ground" move! However, she does not look even half as graceful!

Coy Hill said...

I wonder if her problem was that fish are not her normal fare. Whatever she sure did give you a great show!

Arija said...

After all that putting about and re-fielding, stray comments from the drake, diving and flying about, she certainly earned her meal.

Great shot with all the perfect reflections.

Martha in PA said...

Great series of action shots. Such clarity! Nature is so awesome! I could watch "critters" all day long!