Duck Romance

Duck Romance



1
On the left, a male black duck. On the right, a female mallard.

The duck couple I wrote about two weeks ago was mating on the pond in Brooklyn Bridge Park again today, Sunday, March 10, 2013.

I photographed some of their courtship postures last time. Today I took a few shots of copulation, which is brief and happens in the water. They ended their courtship displays with mutual head-pumping. Then she extended her head and got low and flat in the water.

2
The male stepped onto the female’s back. If you click on the photo to enlarge it, you can see her head below the surface.

3
Grabbing her neck or feathers helps him keep his balance.

4
He maneuvered his tail under hers to make genital contact. Above water we see a single thrust.

5
It was over in moments. He stepped off. She floated up.

6
She enjoyed some post-copulatory splashing.

7
Ta Da!

Julie Feinstein

Julie Feinstein

I am a Collection Manager at the American Museum of Natural History, an author, and a photographer. I live in New York City. I recently published my first popular science book, Field Guide to Urban Wildlife, an illustrated collection of natural history essays about common animals. I update my blog, Urban Wildlife Guide, every Sunday.

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Julie Feinstein

Julie Feinstein

I am a Collection Manager at the American Museum of Natural History, an author, and a photographer. I live in New York City. I recently published my first popular science book, Field Guide to Urban Wildlife, an illustrated collection of natural history essays about common animals. I update my blog, Urban Wildlife Guide, every Sunday.

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