Mother Duck with Baby Ducklings

Mother duck with baby ducklings Left: Mother duck with baby ducklings; click photo for larger image

My daily walks through Foxglove Meadow park on Toledo's west side have familiarized me with a duck family that calls Tifft Creek its home. Pictured are a mother duck and six of her chicks, which are now several months old.

A local feral cat claimed the life of the seventh chick, according to one of my vigilant neighbors. She helps ensure the vitality of the hundreds of ducks that populate the park by providing regular deliveries of corn and seed to supplement the food the ducks find in the wild.

The baby ducks have also survived the local hooligans who traverse the park. In years past the rowdier urchins enjoyed tormenting the ducks, but this year I have seen less of this anti-Anatidae behavior. Perhaps these future sociopaths have graduated to torturing neighborhood cats and rabbits in their development toward becoming the next generation of serial killers.