F is for feathers.
There are two basic types of feathers. Down Feathers are underneath the outer Vaned Feathers. Feathers insulate birds from water and cold temperatures. Wing and tail feathers control flight. Down feathers may be plucked by female birds to line their nests.
|Last Saturday was so sunny and mild, this Muscovy Duck (semi-tame) decided it was a good day for a bath.|
I watched it for about five minutes as it splashed and preened.
|Afterwards it came on shore to dry its feathers. You will notice there are a lot of down feathers on the ground.|
Mallard, the most common duck in the world.
|Hen and Drake|
Mallard ducks can be found in ponds, lakes, and marshes across the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia, Australia, and New Zealand. One source I consulted informed me that Mallards are considered to be an invasive species in New Zealand because they breed with the native New Zealand ducks.
|The male is more colorful than the female, but she is very pretty with each brown feather tipped in light tan.|
Mallard ducks eat a variety of water plants, worms, snails, and insects. The female lays 8-10 pale green eggs in a nest made of grass and downy feathers hidden in marsh grass or a brush pile near the shore. When three or four months old, the young ducks' wings are developed enough for them to begin flying.
Outdoor Wednesday and Water World Wednesday
|February 14, 2015, Tupelo, Mississippi, USA|
The white bark of the Sycamore tree makes a nice contrast to the evergreen Pine trees behind it. Hopefully, by mid-March the Sycamore and other deciduous trees will begin to leaf out again.
Have a beautiful day!
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