Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Ducking Off To California

"Got any spare change, duck?"
I went to Santa Barbara last week, and the sexual highlight of my trip was to see two mallards humping in a public park one morning as I was peacefully trying to read a book. To describe bird sex as wham, bam and thank you mam is inaccurate - it’s much, much faster than that. This duck spread its wings, mounted its chosen partner, and clocked its climax amid a flurry of ripples in less than three seconds before swimming back to its male entourage to quack about the conquest.

This virile pond dweller was positively strutting on water, floating swiftly among its male mates with a certain air of, “Did you lads see what I just did?” When it happens that fast, you have to broadcast the event just in case your contemporaries were momentarily pulling a strand of duckweed from the bottom of the pond and missed it. 

After briefly circling its buddies and vigorously shaking its body a couple of times in a manner suggesting that, if it could speak, it would have been growling the word, “Whoooooooarghhhhhh!” the duck was still bursting with testosterone. How best to work it off? A young turtle was relaxing at the pond’s edge, oblivious to all the lightning