The Day the Mallard Ducks Came to Our Birdfeeder….

Mallard Ducks Eating Under our Birdfeeders

Mallard Ducks Eating Under our Birdfeeders

I went outside to birdwatch and take photographs with my new lens.  (These Duck photos were taken with the Sigma 150-500mm f/5-6.3 AF APO DG OS HSM Telephoto Zoom Lens.)

I expected to see House Finches or American Goldfinches at our feeder, but not Mallard Ducks!   To my amazement, these ducks flew into our backyard to graze on bird seed!

We do live near water, and Mallard Ducks are one of the most common ducks to see here, but I didn’t know that they would eat bird seed!  We were feeding the birds a cheap mix of seeds that included corn,  red milo, white milo, safflower and sunflower seeds.  It’s anyone’s guess which seed or grain that the Mallards liked most, but I guess if you want ducks to come to your bird feeder, provide a mix!

Note that the Mallards didn’t actually land ON our bird feeder, which is good, because their feet are webbed and they must weigh A LOT compared to the little song birds (who knows if our feeder could even handle that!).   They just ate bird seed from under the feeder.  I often spill out the old seed onto the ground when I refill my platform feeder, and if I don’t do that, birds like the Red-Winged Blackbirds will help the ground birds by tossing out a lot of seed too.

Female Mallard Eating Under Bird Feeder

Female Mallard Eating Under Bird Feeder (Female red wing blackbirds in background)

The female was hungrier than the male… The male stood around on lookout much of the time!

Mallard Duck (Male)

Mallard Duck – Male

Have you ever had ducks or other waterfowl visit your bird feeders?    I’d love to hear about it!

2 thoughts on “The Day the Mallard Ducks Came to Our Birdfeeder….

  1. Deb K

    Hi. We live in a large town in Iowa. We don’t have a pond or stream near our home but the Cedar river is a few miles away. We have a mallard couple who visit our bird feeder 2 to 3 times a day. The drake first came this winter and apparently the food was satisfactory because this spring he started bringing his mate.

  2. Stacy L.

    Almost the exact same thing happened in my backyard yesterday. A male and a female mallard duck sat under our tube feeder and just like you said, mainly the female ate (she’s probably getting ready to lay some eggs). They are back today. I think they are scoping out a nesting site. We have a pond nearby and last year a mama duck made a nest in our front flower bed. Sadly an animal got to the eggs. These ducks went straight for the front flower bed. Could this be the same pair or at least the same female?

    Only the birds that are able to land on the feeder have been able to eat. The blue jays, normally aggressive, have been hesitant to land on the ground to eat because the ducks shoo them away!


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