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Harbourfront visit – all my ducks in a row … and a goose and gull too.

Written by catpaw

June 12, 2018

The original title was going to be Harbourfront Expedition part 2 – waterfowl, but once I wrote it out, it sounded like a bad B Hollywood horror flick.  Ducks in a row is much better. There weren’t a lot floating around when I went down on Friday.  Saw many more back in Feb, but the long tailed  ducks are happy up in the tundra now.  Mallards, gulls and Canada geese were the birds du jour. Goose actually. There was one lone goose bobbing along.  I think there were some in the distance, but they weren’t interested in coming close to shore so I wasn’t sure what they were. Unlike the winter trip, I was able to get fairly close to the birds and get some pretty good strong photos.

Photo of a female mallard

Not sure why, but when the lady in the photos below walked by, the female mallard ran up to her, quacking away like she found an long lost friend.

PHoto of the mallard chasing womanPHoto of the mallard chasing woman

Maybe she recognised the grocery bag and knew food comes from them.  She kept following the woman all around, all the way to the parking lot.  Poor duck stood watching at the roadside as the woman left.  She looked around a bit, and latched onto a pair of men in deep conversation.  She quacked off and walked along with them.

PHoto of the mallard going for a walk with 2 men

The men didn’t seem to notice they acquired a feathered companion, much to everyone’s amusement. Last I saw her, she was strolling beside them, quietly quacking to herself.

Some the photos are sharper than others – I don’t have a zoom lens and I really don’t like disturbing them for a better shot. I prefer to take a pass on a photo than be a bird botherer. But with patience comes opportunity.

Photo of a male mallard duck

This one blew up nicely. What’s that phrase? Water off a duck’s back. You can even see the water beading off the feathers. And the blue green feathers are so beautiful.

Photo of a male mallard duck

A few were paddling around the boats, ignoring all the humans.

Male mallard paddling in the water
And off course there were gulls.  I like gulls, despite their bad press. This one is a Ring-billed Gull, but most people simply label them “sea gulls” despite the fact there isn’t a bit of sea to see.

Photo of a gull on the waterfront

I was happy to find this site Gull Watching Guide by the Ontario Field Ornithologists website. There are people who love gulls as much as I do!  I was surprised at how many gulls can be found in Ontario so I’m printing the page o’ gulls for my next trip.

And what is a Canadian waterfront photo without one of these:

Photo of a Canada goose

The ubiquitous Canada goose – Canada’s stealth weapon to the world.

Photo of a Canada goose

The trip was fun. Oh good grief, “the trip” makes it sound like there was some kind of effort needed to get to the Toronto Harbourfront. All it takes is a quick TTC ride to get there.  No fuss, no hassle and boom I’m strolling on the waterfront. It’ll soon be wall to wall humans so I’ll have to nip down again before the height of the tourist season.  Or maybe a trip to High Park to see the birds? Hmmm dunno yet.

I’m still working on the first Mapping Toronto posting and should have the first walk for the second week in July. Fingers crossed.

By the way, if you go down to the waterfront for a visit, please don’t feed the ducks and geese. All that bread and stuff is not good for them. They are quite happy foraging around on the lake for food. Not only are bread crusts bad for birds, handouts encourages them to be nuisances.  Read more here Please Don’t Feed the Birds

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