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Word of the Week: Paddling
March 01, 2019 by Haya Aldoori

Welcome to Word of the Week! Stay tuned for a new word each Friday to amp up your nature vocabulary!

Paddling of Mallard Ducks in High Park

Paddling [PA-duh-ling] (noun): A group of swimming ducks.

If you start your walk on the North end of the park and make your way down Wendigo Creek, you will eventually arrive to a magical spot that we like to call “Duck City”. Here, you can see a large paddling of ducks (sometimes more than 50!) made up of mostly Mallard ducks and occasionally some Wood ducks.

The social behaviour exhibited by ducks and other waterfowl can vary throughout the year as they won’t engage in activities that are not beneficial to their survival. During the breeding season, most waterfowl are almost completely unsociable because they do not see a need for it at this time. However, once they get to their wintering grounds, the birds get way more social, foraging and roosting together in great numbers. They recognize the many benefits associated with being a part of a large group, like increasing the likelihood of detecting and surviving predators and other potential threats.

How many ducks will you see at “Duck City” on your next High Park visit?

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