“Wild ducks in North America are divided into two broad groups: the dabblers or paddle ducks, and the divers.”
― Anonymous

Most people come to the Preserve to see the birds but at this time of year, there aren’t nearly as many and there aren’t as many kinds. There are plenty of ducks, though, either dabblers or divers. This handsome male ring-necked duck falls into the diving category although at the Preserve where in one lake you’re allowed to feed the birds, the minute you walk onto the bridge, the flotilla heads towards you at top speed expecting goodies. I’m always a disappointment to them.

I believe this to be a sort of exorcist mallard, its head turned around while resting. (I never saw the movie, but I do know her head spins around at some point. His does not.) Forward or backward, he sports such lovely, deep colors on his head. Mallards are dabblers, going after food in the iconic duck-bottom-up pose. To see a group of them doing that makes me smile every time. 🙂 See?

“In terms of habitat, ducks can be found anywhere that is wet.”
― Victoria de Rijke, Duc

This trip I finally saw a female ring-necked duck (although I can’t really detect a ring on either of them). Her coloring isn’t as dramatic as the male’s but she looks more soft and mother-y, don’t you think? I can see ducklings following her or pushing up under her wings while dad’s sharp eye watches for danger. This is the first time I noticed the little hook at the end of the beak, too. The better to snag something to eat, my dear.

“Be like a duck, paddling and working very hard inside the water, but what everyone sees is a smiling and calm face.”
― Manoj Arora, From the Rat Race to Financial Freedom

I think her face looks calm although I doubt she’s worried about financial freedom. But who knows? I can’t pretend to know what a duck thinks. I do think that this is the end of this post. I hope you’re having fun dabbling in this and that today or perhaps are diving into something you really enjoy (hopefully not your food.) I’m going to duck out to do some dabbling a/o diving of my own. Enjoy Wednesday!

  1. restlessjo says:

    Thanks, Janet! I shan’t be ducking far but I plan to enjoy the day.

    • I hope you’ve had a grand one, Jo. I thought of you as I made some baked doughnuts just now. Always good to have a treat that’s both delicious and healthy! 🙂

  2. Enjoy 😉 we have weather for the ducks. A rain coat and a Bess walk will do nicely.


  3. peggy says:

    You captures some great pictures of these lovely ducks. I like their refllections in the water.

  4. Mallards are beautiful as showcased by your lovely photos.

    • Glad you enjoyed them, Judy. How’s your weather? We’re having a bit of a heat wave for the next few (too many) days–in the 90’s Sigh. Can’t wait for it to drop back down. That sort of temperature will be here soon enough.

  5. Ally Bean says:

    I’m a paddler, appearing to be calm while working like crazy underneath. I like these photos very much.

    • Glad you liked them, Ally. Today’s a definite paddling day as I’ve been working like mad since about 6 am. But I’m getting lots done, so that’s good. I’m going to dabble in some reading shortly though. 🙂

  6. They’re lovely! It’s it funny how the most obvious ring is actually around their bills but they’re called ring-necked for the hard to see ring around their necks! I do enjoy seeing both the dabbers and divers too. The dabbers are funny when they’re all bottoms up.

  7. I remember my 1st and only duck. A child at Easter when my father brought this yellow fuzzball home. We kept it in a box until it grew too large. “Pepe” needed to be released my mother decided. Seeing other ducks at a golf course pond, that was the chosen spot. Father climbed a fence. Only remember bits….but did check that drop off spot several years later. Still many ducks! Love your last photo!! I’m off to dabble as well. 😊🦆

    • What a good story! I bet Pepe enjoyed being with all the other ducks, but I bet that was hard for you. I’m just chuckling at your dad climbing the fence to release Pepe. Hope your dabbling is going well and thanks for leaving a comment.


  8. Tom says:

    The ring-necked ducks are very similar to the tufted ducks, Janet, only the tufted ones have a ponytail instead of a ring, and they dive too. I used to love seeing Tufty dive when he visited the Lake. They are cute ducks… mind you, all ducks are cute! 🦆😊

  9. JT Twissel says:

    I suppose I’m a bit of both but I don’t think I can maintain a calm facade while paddling!

  10. de Wets Wild says:

    I can tell from the beautiful pictures and your upbeat commentary that you had a great time at the preserve!

  11. Ducking great shots and insights!

  12. ledrakenoir says:

    Definitely both – definitely. 😀

    My nickname has always been duck or drake – even before I reached school age. Started with the ugly duckling went over to be black duck – some of the biggest kids or youngsters in the village think I think was noisy and provocatively annoying when they tried to dominate us. The nickname got stuck and a lot of people use it as a “pet name” for me. Some only know me by that name and have forgotten or are unaware about my name is Nils. 😀

    • That’s a good story, Drake, although I’m sure it wasn’t fun when you were young. I knew someone named Nils many years ago but he was of Swedish descent, born and raised in the US.

  13. […] Are you a dabbler or a diver? […]

  14. LOL! Enjoyed these images & your commentary, Janet! 🌞