Draw a Bird Day: Mallard

collage mallard a

we decoy ducks–turn
them into sitting targets
for the play of guns,

cartoon them with characters
that ignore their balanced grace

mallard f watercolor s

I did a lot of drawings and paintings of ducks and found them to be a challenge.  Often they ended up looking more like decoys than something alive.  I was interested to discover that the expression “sitting duck” came from how easy ducks are for hunters to shoot and kill–less sport than slaughter.

2 mallards s

I also did not know that they spend 2 weeks in late summer or early fall molting, replacing all of their feathers.  During that time they can’t fly.


ducklings drawing s

Mallards are good parents, and prefer shallow freshwater wetlands to raise their families.  They are one of the most recognizable and abundant duck species in the world, and ancestor to most strains of domesticated ducks.

For Colleen’s #tanka Tuesday, poet’s choice.  I’ve written a tanka.

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About memadtwo

For more madness, follow me on Instagram @h_zimel methodtwomadness is a blog of two friends, Nina and Kerfe kblog is Kerfe's solo branch on the tree

23 responses to “Draw a Bird Day: Mallard”

  1. Frank Hubeny says :

    I especially liked the flying duck at the top and the drawing at the bottom. They do seem to be mainly sitting on water when I see them.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. boundlessblessingsblog says :

    Very informative post, Marta and never knew so much about ducks. Lovely drawings and yes with trial and error drawings too come out very nicely.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. judeitakali says :

    Loved the way you deliver the information

    Liked by 1 person

  4. jazzytower says :

    Oh! I didn’t know about the molting either. Interesting. That must put them at some risk. I always find your drawings facinating! Nice work as usual. 😊


    Liked by 1 person

  5. rivrvlogr says :

    Love all of the drawings, especially the last sketch.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Colleen M. Chesebro says :

    Brilliant poetry and information about the duck, Kerfe. I can’t image them losing their feathers for two weeks out of the year. That would truly leave them vulnerable. As usual, I love your art work. You capture what many of us can’t see. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  7. kiddlescarol says :

    The flying duck made me smile immediately, and I can feel the love of the baby ducks for their mama. So sweet.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. merrildsmith says :

    I like the poem and art, especially the sketch. I saw a mother duck and her babies at the edge of the river a couple days ago. I took a little video because they were so sweet–one little duckling wandered back to the beach, and Momma came after him. I didn’t know about the molting either.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. memadtwo says :

    These are great drawings and I love the collage. I also really love ducks (please see my video of the mama duck and her babies!). N.


  10. D. Wallace Peach says :

    I love the pen and ink of the mama and her babies. It does seem awful to blast them out of the water as they paddle around. Sad tanka, but well told.

    Liked by 1 person

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