Ironically, Mallard appears to descend from a series of French and German names that literally mean 'wild duck.'
There is also a variant called a Bibbed Mallard--iridescent-green-headed, but with a mostly chocolate plumage save for a white throat. It could be an escaped domestic bird or back-cross, but it appears frequently enough in the wild that it now seems to be part of the wild gene pool. Most authors lean towards saying it represents domestic genes that have lodged in wild populations, but it is found throughout Europe and N America and at least one respectable British ornithologist I knew believed it was a naturally occurring wild variant.
I also need to apologize profusely for including an entire digest in my Ruffed Grouse comment. This is at least the third time I've committed this sin. I can only promise to be more careful in the future.
Nathaniel WanderPortland, OR
Max Planck is supposed to have said: A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.Andreas Wagner observed of Planck's remark: Science, like nature, advances one funeral at a time. (Arrival of the Fittest, p.197)
Msg: #6 in digest
From: "Robert O'Brien" <baro...>
Date: Tue, 30 Jan 2018 08:04:15 -0800
Subject: [obol] Duck ID Help
In previous centuries the wild mallard Was simply called "The Wild Duck" To
distinguish it from these guys. Bob O'Brien