Sackville Waterfowl Park
New Brunswick, 1999
Mating Widgeon Pair
The top and bottom photos are of lone drakes. They are just beginning to moult into their drab "eclipse" plumage. The green slash running back from the eye has already lost much of its breeding lustre. When "eclipsed", male ducks more closely resemble the females. Only in breeding plumage do they sport their handsome colours. Only then is identification easy as well for many ducks, male and female, are a rather non-descript brown in late summer when new flight feathers are being produced. Most ducks shed all their flight feathers simultaneously and become flightless for a while during this "eclipse" phase.
The middle photo shows a pair in the act of mating.
Once again it appears the ladies get the least desirable position . . .
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