Liz and Graeme sent a disturbing update on the wood duck nest:
‘Latest on the Wood Duck this morning was good. This afternoon, not good. Something has cleared out the nest.’
With a clutch of 10-12 chicks, Graeme and Liz were worried that something had eaten the newborns.
After discussing the situation with fellow Landcare member, Jenny, who has experience with wildlife rescue and has looked after many land and water birds, all became clear.
Shortly after hatching the Wood duck chicks climb out of the nesting hollow, jump down to the ground (without being able to fly!) and are led by their parents to the safety of the nearest suitable water surface. Posts or hollows are usually surrounded by leaf litter which breaks the chicks fall when they take the leap. Another fantastic use of litter in our ecology!!
Graeme and Liz will be keeping an eye out for the little brood.