Near the retirement community where my father lives is a man-made pond which serves as a basin to catch rainwater and prevent flooding in the area. It is home to a large population of Canada geese and these mallard ducks. The population has grown so large over the past few years that it spills out toward the retirement community and a nearby shopping center.
Just across the street from the pond is a large field where, I assume, at least some of the ducks and geese have nested. The tricky thing is that this is a pretty high traffic area, and the birds often cross the road leading their babies back and forth to the pond. When that happens, all traffic screeches to halt to let them cross.
It reminds me of a book that I loved when I was a kid, Make Way for Ducklings, by Robert McCloskey. It tells the story of a mother duck and her ducklings who stop traffic in Boston on their way to the pond in the Public Garden. When we visited the Boston last year we saw the bronze statue of Mrs. Mallard and her ducklings right next to the pond in the Public Garden. If you haven't come across this book, check it out. It's a great story.
Of course, by this time of year, our ducklings are pretty grown up. It's hard to tell the juveniles from the adults just by looking, but the adults are still pretty protective of their offspring.
The reason I stopped and took the picture was that I saw a pair of geese that looked different than the rest. They were black and white, but they were too shy to let me take their picture, so I guess I'll have to check out the pond again.