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Just ducky
Lens: DA* 200 Camera: K10D Photo Location: Duke Gardens, Durham NC USA 
Posted By: baro-nite, 09-25-2011, 02:23 PM

At Duke Gardens (on the Duke University campus) there's a large pond with a year-round population of ducks. Mostly mallards, of course, but an interesting selection of other native and exotic ducks.

Here's a Northern Pintail drake in eclipse plumage. Easy to tell it's an eclipse drake and not a hen by the flash of color on the wings.

On Sunday there are lots of families visiting the Gardens, and feeding the ducks is popular. But this can lead to squabbles. The mallard hen (on the left) is getting the worst of it in this fight. I think the other is an exotic but I didn't ID it.
Edit: possibly a Duclair or other hybrid Mallard.

I presume this Mandarin Duck drake in full breeding plumage is the same duck I saw about a month ago, then in full eclipse plumage.

The Mandarin Duck is an exotic here in the US. Its closely related cousin, the Wood Duck, is a native. Some subtle dominance display going on here, but no clear winner.

A couple more shots of the "woody" in all its glory:

Thanks for viewing!

Last edited by baro-nite; 01-27-2013 at 02:24 PM. Reason: updated ID
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09-25-2011, 03:16 PM   #2
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Sharp colourful images. I especially like 1 and the stillness of the duck paired with the ripples of the water in 5.

09-25-2011, 03:32 PM   #3
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Beautiful images. #3 is my fave with #5 and #6 close behind.
09-25-2011, 05:44 PM   #4
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Thanks for the kind comments. The ducks were very cooperative today -- I was specifically looking for these three species (Pintail, Mandarin, woody), having seen them there before but not gotten satisfactory shots of any of them. Very happy with how the shots turned out today. Now looking forward to seeing the Pintail in breeding plumage, and (I hope) hens of each species.


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