really not calling anyone names. Itís
just that I was washing dishes while
out the kitchen window and I spied ducks on the pond. I went and
my binoculars to take a better look. There were two of them.
couldn't tell a lot with my antiquated
went outside to get a closer look.
have always enjoyed watching ducks and have even tried to keep tame
it seems like they always end up getting eaten by coyotes.
I headed out toward the pond, I tried to be very quiet and move slowly
at last I
was able to get fairly close. I stood for quite
long time and observed the pair. The
prettiest one was black and white
kept diving while the other one just swam around as if watching for
She was obviously the female who had been told, ďHoney, watch
he kept diving under the water showing off his expert diving abilities.
I watched, he would dive under and stay under for a long time.
him and he would stay under a good 15-20 seconds at a time.
seemed to be thoroughly enjoying himself while the little duck wife was
swimming nearby. She was
being the steadfast sentry,
I wondered if she was thinking about when it might be her turn to dive.
wind was getting cold so I turned to go back to the house. When I
saw me and immediately flew away. They
appeared to fly effortlessly off
the pond with hardly any movement and not requiring a running start.
seemed to just lift their wings and off they flew!
came back into the house and checked in my bird book but couldn't find
looked quite like that strikingly beautiful drake. Well, I
the last of the pretty ducks anyway since they had flown away.
the very next day, I spied them again and watched for a long time and so
decided to do some duck research. Finally,
I found information
them on the Internet. They
are called bufflehead ducks.
is derived from the obsolete
buffalo. The Latin name, Bucephala albeola, means "white
pretty visitors on the pond fit the description on the computer perfectly.
said that they live around both fresh water and salt water.
According to the
I discovered that bufflehead ducks usually stay a little further north
Missouri, and are often found on the seacoasts.
They are diving ducks that
swim under water and they dive to eat aquatic insects and vegetation.
not sure what the buffleheads were doing here in Northeast Missouri
but Iím glad they took the scenic route this year and stayed a few days
the Pond Bed & Breakfast Inn.
By Pamela Perry Blaine
© April 2005