On Point

A mallard pair swims with the female on point

I think the male mallard is one of our most beautiful birds but they are often unappreciated because they are so common and tame in duck ponds around the country. How much more so the females without the glorious green! At Ridgefield mallards are not so common and quite shy so I photograph them whenever I get the chance, and when this pair swam in my direction I focused on the female on point.

Green in Green

Green in Green

You can find tame mallards in every duck pond in the country so I’m always amused to see how shy they are in the wild. There aren’t many mallards at Ridgefield and they’ve proven to be one of the most challenging ducks for me to photograph. I couldn’t resist a chance to take a portrait of the glorious green head of this drake against the green grasses of the meadow.

Wet Christmas

A mallard floats in a sea of yellow as a duck pond at Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden has its water colored by reflections from the nearby trees

On this rainy Christmas day here in Portland (it did snow earlier so we had a shot at a white Christmas, but alas our more typical wet Christmas won out), here’s one of my favorite wildlife shots of the year, a mallard drake resting amidst the reflected colors of the fall leaves.

The picture was taken in late October at Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden here in Portland.