White-headed Duck (Oxyura leucocephala).
The images of the White-headed Ducks were taken a couple of weeks ago at Martin Mere.
They are captive birds and part of a conservation programme.
Ruddy Duck (Oxyura jamaicensis).
The Ruddy Duck images were taken in 2009 on Haydn's Pool.
Wild birds... but their days were numbered as a cull to rid them from the UK had started in 2008.
The Ruddy Duck was an introduced bird to Britain (originally from America) and as a result of escapes from wildlife collections in the 1940's they became established in the UK.
Because of the Ruddy Ducks aggresive courting behaviour and a willingness to interbreed with the endangered White-headed Duck of Southern Europe it has led to a cull to extirpate the bird from these shores at a cost to the UK taxpayer of £4.6 million.
I have read that while we have been killing these beautiful and comical little birds the French (whose Ruddy Duck population are more likely to be mating with the Spanish birds than ours) aren't doing anything about their Ruddy Duck population.
While the White- headed Duck is quite a cute bird to see...
I really miss seeing the Ruddy Ducks on my patch.
I watched this funny little bird drumming his lovely blue beak on his chest during 2009 but have never seen one since.
It was confirmed in March that well over 4500 birds had been destroyed and that only around 120 remain. A lovely watchable little bird and personally I think the whole exercise has been a total waste of our hard earned cash.
To see more wonderful birds click on the image below to visit.
World Bird Wednesday LV