Friday, 1 June 2012

8 Mallard chicks, 3 Moorhen chicks and 4 cygnets, UCD Lake

Disappointed by the Yes vote?!
This might cheer you up.
For a millisecond.
8 Mallard chicks, 3 Moorhen chicks and 4 cygnets, plus parents - are now all living on the little island on the main UCD Lake!
Austerity means nada to these little things, we throw them a bit of Brennans, bit of lettuce and they're happy out.

I first noticed the 8 bundles of Mallard joy yesterday, I'm pretty sure it was their first outing.
They were out again today, snoozing, sunning themselves, so this vid is a bit boring, but I wanted a record of the 8 of them on the lake.

As you can see in the background there are still 4 cygnets left from the original 6 cygnets born on the lake. They've grown loads in 4 weeks and the moult into white feathers is already showing.

A reminder of how small they were

Also, adding to the mix of chick species on the island, 3 little Moorhen chicks have been strutting their scrawny little legs around the edge. I haven't seen them take to the water yet, unlike the ones down near the secret lakes who are bombing it around the joint.

Hope these little bundles of joy cheered you up a little bit?

Teeny, tiny bit?

Bit of Brennans, bit of lettuce - we'll all be fine.

The adult mallard looking after the little chicks on the ucd lake looks to me to be a male? This is highly unusual as I've only ever seen the female adult looking after the chicks.
If you look, the adult appears to have male eclipse plumage, you can see the green sheen on the head feathers (if you can't see the sheen in the video, trust me there's a definite green sheen), the white patch on the chest and the colouring matches a male far more than a female, plus there's the lack of the male duck curl on the tail feathers? If anyone could throw any light on this I'd be interested.