Last week we had a couple of visitors. Mr. and Mrs. Mallard have been coming to see us for the last 9 years. Over this time they usually take an aerial view of the property before deciding where to set down. You can hear them yelling at each other in the sky above since they never seem to agree on where to land. Then they stroll the grounds, taking their time to see what's new or not. This is the first time I have ever seen them come right up to the front door. They are usually more shy and cautious. Unfortunately I couldn't get a photo of Mr. Mallard at the door as he caught sight of me and scooted off. The Mrs. was not so flighty and checked out the patio before joining her hubby by the drive. They then tootled off to the front gardens before paying their respects to the neighbours.
Now that I know they are here I wait in anticipation for the future Mallard offspring. Mom and dad tend to have broods of ten to twelve young, all very cute and fuzzy to look at, though they do not all survive.
Last year they took to taking turns sitting on the roof. One would be the lookout while the other scouted about for food (my neighbour leaves them corn). Then they talk to each other, back and forth, from roof to ground when it's time to switch places. How quaint.
Here are a couple of photos of the Mr. and Mrs.