See courting ducks in action. These displays are key mating behaviors to look for.
Mallard Head-Pumping: Males and females rhythmically bob their heads. This display is often repeated and followed by mating.
Mallard Head-Up-Tail-Up: With a loud whistle, the drake pulls his wings and tail up, shows off his purple-blue secondaries and compresses his body. This is a quick gesture, often given by males in a group to impress the female.
King Eider Pushing-Reaching: Male places the bill tip close to water with chin close to breast then thrusts head forward.
Common Goldeneye Head-Throw-Kick: Male thrusts his head forward, then lowers head backward with his bill pointed up and utters a single call. Afterward he thrusts his head quickly forward, sometimes kicking water with his feet.
Red-breasted Merganser Salute: Curtsy Crest is quickly lowered and head dropped to just above water, then neck is stretched up forming a straight line; chest and neck then dropped into the water and tail is tucked under.
Waterfowl are all around us. Are you confident identifying them even when they’re on the other side of the pond? Get training in identifying waterfowl from all angles and benefit from strategies like noticing “where is the white?” to take your birding skills to the next level.
Learn More: Duck and Waterfowl Identification Course