Sadly, the duck with the injured foot hasn't been around for some weeks. I was so happy that he found a companion last fall. But now, she is at the pond, and he is not. So once again, we have a lone duck instead of a couple (or none, as they are all supposed to have flown south for the winter). She is friendly and if you go and sit on one of the benches in the afternoon, she'll come over to check you out. I'm sure someone is still bringing food, based on her behavior. Otherwise, she hangs out on the water or the bank until sundown and then she heads into a large drainage pipe for shelter. Which she will certainly need tonight and in the nights to come when the temperatures will plummet to the teens.
Birds of a feather flock together, but there is an imbalance at our pond this year as there was last year, although the players are different. I'm already hoping that spring will come early and the flock will return and my own sense of duck pond community will be restored. I don't really know what the ducks' sense of community is, and what it must be like to be alone for the winter (The Ugly Duckling notwithstanding), but I can't help feeling that she knows something is amiss.
I'm flying south for three days of winter myself - going from the 30's today and tomorrow to the high 60's and even 70 on Friday. It's the annual All State Jazz weekend in Georgia, and I'll be in Savannah with my husband and son where the weather will be nice and warm. I'm looking forward to being with my family and Georgia friends.
Meanwhile, think warm thoughts for my little duck friend.