Wild night at Ell Pond

Ell Pond's cast of characters

by Debbi Collar

It was a wild night at Ell Pond.

Duck's were parading by showing off their trio of ducklings.

Swans rest on a nest incubating and preparing for their own
offspring to hatch in late May or early June according to
those who meet by the Main Street fence to watch and
calculate the birth date of the cygnets. The city's own
beloved swans "Mel" and "Rose" have been building their
nest close to the sidewalk, delighting residents and visitors
for many years.  However, last year and previous years, the
swans have lost their cygnets and/or their eggs.

Once again this year, "Mel" and "Rose's" eggs have been
lost. Speculation is that predators may have been the cause
or the eggs may have been defective and the swans
abandoned the nest.

There were five eggs that "Mel" and "Rose" were tenderly
caring for earlier this year.  The pair would each take a turn
on the nest, carefully preening before setting their wet
feathers down on the eggs. The community once again
gathered by the fence taking out electronic equipment only
to photograph the city's most famous feathered friends.

Then one night, a commotion at the pond and soon after,
the loss of the five eggs.  

As to what happened, no one really knows.
Did a duck taking a rest on "Mel" and "Rose's" nest with her
three tired ducklings and the drake traveling with them
upset the swans?

One of the swans chased the ducks into reeds at another
part of the pond.  

There, they all met a raccoon

Hissing and nipping occurred as the raccoon sensed
trouble. The swan was nipping at the reeds where the
ducks were taking cover.

Red winged blackbirds screeched.

The photographs show only a portion of Ell Pond's cast of
characters. Geese, turtles, hawks, muskrats can be added
to the list of wildlife that lives within and all around Ell
Pond, along with a variety of species of birds.


Take the time to enjoy nature, observe it as you walk by,
but please give the wildlife their own space at a safe

June 5, 2015  

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