Photo courtesy Carole Lent/Duluth
Not many ducks have returned from the South yet. These mallards, photographed by Duluth’s Carole Lent from the Minnesota Slip Bridge near Canal Park, are probably among the 50 or so mallards that have remained in the Duluth area all winter. Wildlife photographer Michael Furtman has seen them for much of the winter, often in the Duluth Ship Canal. In some years, a couple hundred mallards will remain in the Duluth area all winter, often using the open water of Lake Superior near the Lakewalk. This year, ice conditions made it more difficult for so many ducks to remain.
The mallards have been paired up and exhibiting courting behavior for a few weeks, Furtman said. Mallards that return from the South are usually paired up when they arrive.
A few ring-necked ducks, lesser scaup and trumpeter swans were reported in this week’s Duluth Birding Report. But more waterfowl should be returning soon.