One day during the Spring after I built my pond, I counted 42 wood ducks swimming around out in the water. Wood ducks came every Spring and also in the Autumn. Some of the females stuck around to nest in the boxes I put up in the trees, and had ducklings. Over the years the number of these striking water fowl began to decline, but I always saw some. Last year I saw only a few, and this year I have seen none at all.
I recently heard a news report that stated that one third of the bird species in North America are disappearing and have been classified as “Threatened” since 1970. ( http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/state-of-north-americas-birds-mckenna-1.3587716 ) A lot of the birds we see up here migrate south to the US and Central America during the winter, coming up to Canada to mate and nest during the Spring. It seems that they suddenly, just no longer arrive at their usual habitat, and we are left to wonder what happened to them.
Below is a photo I took five or more years ago, showing about 20 wood ducks in my pond.
You can see my paintings at: www.davidmarchant.ca