Wood Duck - Alice Keck Park

Dika Golovatchoff

Although I didn't see it yesterday or this morning I had very good views on my afternoon walk 4-5 PM today.  The handsome male is actively courting a female Mallard when not preening or resting on the shore of the island in pond.  

There are fewer Mallards than in past years as none of the ducklings born there are surviving very long.  The gulls and turtles have almost taken over the pond so it was quite refreshing to observe this attractive Wood Duck - a rarity in this park.  A rather large all black duck with green iridescent sheen on back was also swimming around.  I have never seen this duck before and imagine it to be a hybrid of some kind.  The bill is black and the eyes a very dark brown.