Ducks on Ice

SINCE YESTERDAY most of the lake at Newmillerdam has frozen over. Mallards, Black-headed Gulls and Coot have gathered by a small open area no bigger than a garden pond near the causeway across the top end of the lake. A Canada Goose waddles awkwardly across the ice towards the war memorial where someone is feeding the ducks.

We get a better view of the Dabchick. As the main lake is frozen it’s on the inlet channel, along with a few Mallards. While my drawing was enough to serve as a field sketch (even though it was drawn from memory later), I didn’t catch the buoyant character of the Dabchick; not as rounded and buoyant-looking as a rubber duck but not as lean and lanky looking as my sketch, which took on the proportions of an adolescent Moorhen.

I realise when we walk under the conifers where we saw the Siskins yesterday that I drew them (from memory) on pine branches, while in fact they were on Larch. I picked up this branch with two female larch cones on it to draw.


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