It has been really cold in New York since Christmas, and I've been going down to the 59th Street Pond to feed Woody and his buddies as the ice takes up more of their habitat, plus checking out the ducks and other waterfowl at the Reservoir in Central Park, and at the beaches at Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx, Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn and Great Kills on Staten Island. These birds seem so resilient in the freezing cold (although I have seen casualties, often the result of a duck or cormorant trying to land on the ice and breaking a leg).
I put together a video homage to the ducks, geese, gulls and other water birds I've seen during the cold weather. I call it Cold Ducks!!! and it's set to music by Debussy. It features hooded mergansers, ruddy ducks (including the only time I've seen one try to run on ice), a common loon, ring-billed gulls, buffleheads, greater scaup, herring gulls, Canada geese, wood ducks (Woody and his buddies at 59th Street, plus two at the Reservoir), long-tailed ducks (the first I've ever seen — a video of them to come soon!), ring-necked ducks (my second-favorite duck), mallards, northern pintail (Pinny), American coot, American black ducks, northern shovelers, great black-backed gulls, brant and red-breasted mergansers.
Below you can find a photo gallery of some of the cold ducks and other freezing birdies.
The photos below were taken Dec. 27 and 28, 2017, and Jan. 2, 3, 9 and 10, 2018: Canada geese, long-tailed duck, hooded merganser (female), wood duck (Woody's nephew), wood duck (back, at Reservoir), male and female ring-necked ducks, black ducks, great black-backed gulls, northern pintail, herring gulls, American coot (you can really see those great "fern feet"), red-breasted merganser, more black-backed gulls.