The bill is gone (again)

As I predicted when told that the university would be be “landscaping” the islands in Botany Pond yesterday, the activity drove both Honey and James away. They haven’t been here all day, and, catastrophizing as usual, I imagine that that they’re gone for good. If they don’t return by tomorrow, I’ll be sad.  Here are some photos of the pond today.

Below: the pathetic landscaping of the duck islands, which were completely bare before yesterday morning. What is this—a few clumps of spindly grass, already wilting from lack of water? That isn’t landscaping!

We still have turtles, of course, but I can’t get very excited about them. However, for the reptilophiles, here they are:

To me the pond is empty, and the only remnant of my mallards is this:

It’s gonna be a long fall, winter, and spring. . .


  1. Mark R.
    Posted September 15, 2018 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    Well at least the bill(s) stayed around a couple weeks longer this year. And maybe they’ll reappear. But I’ll be bummed if this is the last duck report of 2018.

    Strange “landscaping”…shouldn’t that be done in the spring?

  2. Rita
    Posted September 15, 2018 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    That last pic is so sad!

  3. Posted September 15, 2018 at 3:50 pm | Permalink

    Don’t forget, Fahey had a turtle sanctuary.

    Why Ectotherms Matter.

  4. rickflick
    Posted September 15, 2018 at 3:51 pm | Permalink

    The call of nature.

  5. Jenny Haniver
    Posted September 15, 2018 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

    I say, return for several days and do your call. Who knows, they might not be far away and will return for a while.

    Do any amphibians inhabit the pond?

  6. mikeyc
    Posted September 15, 2018 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

    Those plants look fine. Transplanting always makes them look sad for awhile and the green part isn’t the important part at this stage. If the water and muck is good, the roots will put up new shoots in the spring. Just in time for Honey and friends, when they return, to eat them all.

  7. grasshopper
    Posted September 15, 2018 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    The pond needs remedial work, as well as landscaping, to ensure it is a working habitat for frogs. Frogs cannot climb vertical surfaces. They can get into the water, but not out again when the walls are vertical. So they starve. And croak.

    • Achrachno
      Posted September 15, 2018 at 5:29 pm | Permalink

      Turtle density is a bit to high for good frog habitat, no? Redesign of the pond walls might not help much.

  8. Ken Phelps
    Posted September 15, 2018 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

    “That isn’t landscaping!”

    And that isn’t a lawn, but you kids get off it anyway!

  9. Posted September 15, 2018 at 7:40 pm | Permalink

    Aw, shucks. 😦 A wee feather….

    Still, it’s a nice consolation to see the toitle doing its yoga pose, the plank.

    • Diane G
      Posted September 16, 2018 at 2:11 am | Permalink


      I loved that pic.

      • Posted September 16, 2018 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

        Yes, look at the toes on the left back foot sticking up!

        • Diane G
          Posted September 17, 2018 at 1:43 am | Permalink

          Awww! 🙂

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