Duck Soup

(Click to enlarge)

When the lake freezes over, the birds have to squeeze into a smaller space in the un-iced parts of the lake, but the different species of ducks co-exist surprisingly well considering that they are all after a similar limited food supply of small plants and fish in the constrained area.

In this picture you can see the large Canadian Geese, the male and female Mallards with their wings spread, the small American Coots with their white bills and dark bodies, and lastly, a bunch of Northern Shovelers, standing in the back and floating in the water, dark green head and dark, flat-ended bills, and bodies with white breasts and brown flanks.

It was fascinating to see all these different kinds of birds band together and turn around as one when a few aggressive gulls approached; the gulls were not welcome to this party—perhaps they would not play well with others?—and the ducks soon mobbed the gulls and forced them to go elsewhere.

Prospect Park Lake

Brooklyn, New York

Ruddy Duck

(Click to enlarge)

Here’s the Ruddy Duck. They’re small and like to travel in large same-species groups. The male and female both have chestnut sides and backs, with sharp tails; the male has white cheek patches. In the photo above you can see two males in the foreground and a female behind them.

Prospect Park,

Brooklyn, New York

“That Joke is Dumb–I’m Aware Of That”

When I watch videos of Mitch Hedberg I’m amazed. His appearances are always precarious—you sort of know that he would never succeed at anything else, and you feel like there’s no way this guy is going to make it through the set, but somehow he does. He’s like a clueless guy from the audience who grabs a flaming torch from the circus fire-eater and manages not to get burned. But I am grateful that he did, because his off-kilter humor really makes me laugh.

Thanks to YouTuber 0Bathgate66