Sunday, December 5, 2010

A Park Visitor-Ruddy Duck

Today two young lads came into the park office and one was carrying a duck under his arm. Yes, I know this sounds like the beginning of a bad joke, but unfortunately it is not. They found the creature hunkered down under a car in one of our parking lots. Poor thing wasn't putting up much of a fight, so I am guessing it was pretty tired. I grabbed a box to put it in to keep it quiet and reduce its stress.

I am pretty sure this is a juvenile or female Ruddy Duck. They have a pretty distinctive tail which is short with stiff feathers. I have only had the privilege of seeing them in the water, so seeing one up close was a real treat. However, I wish it had been under different circumstances. I called my friend Don Gorney, and wondered why it would be in our parking lot. He figured it was flying through, thought the parking lot was actually a pond and then tried to land. It didn't look injured, no obvious cuts, hopefully it will get some rest and be able to go on its way. It is going to a vet that was recommended by a rehabilitator in the morning.StumbleUpon


heidi said...

That's how a Surf Scoter ended up in Abilene, TX - at least the finders brought it to you fairly quickly! Alas, when they're that lethargic, they usually need a few weeks of R&R with a good diet and non-stressful environment before they can be released (and make sure there are other Ruddies around; our scoter had to be shipped to CA since early summer in TX would have left it migrating the wrong way!)

Janet Creamer said...

Thanks, Heidi. I hope that is the case, that it just needs some rest and will be okay.