We are delighted that she has found a sunny, peaceful spot on our property to sit and wait for her eggs to hatch. If our calculations are correct, this could be any day now. Our front pond generally has ducks swinging in for a swim, and a soak in the sun during the warmer months, but this is the first one that has decided to take up residence for a month of nesting.
It is quite amazing to witness, especially early-on when her hubby duck would come to get her for a swim and then would stand guard - flying right above - until she was safe and sound back to her nest.
Not knowing too much about mama ducks, I decided to do a little bit of research. This is what I learned.
The mama duck lays her eggs over a period of days, usually a few at a time, between 9-15 eggs. Once she has laid all of her eggs she will no longer get up. It takes the eggs 28-days to hatch from the time she has laid her last egg. When they do hatch she will lead them all to a body of water, probably our front pond.
The father takes no part in caring for the eggs or young and this is probably why we have not seen him since she laid her last egg. It also appears ducks do not mate for love but out of necessity.
We are fairly certain our duck is a Mallard. The female mallard is a mottled brownish color. She has a dark brown head and a dark brown strip running through the eye. Her bill is orange with bits of brown and her feet are orange.
So now we anxiously await the ducklings arrival; just in time for Mother's Day, maybe? And we will be sure to make way for the ducklings.