Whistling up trouble today at Tyto, a parent Wandering Whistling-Duck (Dendrocygna arcuata) - which had six large juveniles in tow - finds itself fiercely rebuffed after trying to link with a two-parent family of 10.
After being outflapped, outjumped and wholly swamped, the bird retired, possibly to rethink the idea of threesomes. (It's a pity the sexes are too similar to ID.)
Ducks have been seen on the lagoons with up to 24 juveniles. Unlikely all these would be the product of, say, a shared nest. So mergers are okay, but seemingly strictly on terms of an alpha parent.
Romantics from the past might have whistled up loving monogamy to explain the rebuff, but ducks (and most other birds) are usually up to wandering for a bit on the side. Perhaps today's loser fronted up too boldly.
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