It’s the first time mallards have been documented as killers.
The ducks were spotted by researchers from the University of Cambridge and Romania’s Veterinary and Food Safety Authority at a reservoir last summer. They noticed one adult and ten juvenile mallards along the shore, “vigorously shaking” the vegetation. But then the adult started shaking its head and squishing whatever was in its beak. It turned out to be a fledgling Grey Wagtail. After a struggle with the fledgling’s wings, the adult managed to gulp down the poor wagtail whole.
But the mallards weren’t done. They went back to the vegetation and flushed out another bird, this time a Black Redstart fledgling, and the juvenile mallards either drowned the fledgling or ate it. Then, the researchers write, they “emerged onto a floating tree trunk for basking and preening as the group entered a phase of rest.”
Ducks are known omnivores that sometimes eat fish or crabs when they can’t get enough protein in their diet otherwise. But this is the first time they’ve been documented as cold-blooded killers. “The fact that these individuals seem to have learnt how to hunt birds is pretty extraordinary,”
so fish and crabs can't be murdered?
doing them in,
"cold blooded" murder