Cottontop is back!
Lake Murray is about a half mile from where I live, so I’ll often walk or bike over there to enjoy all the wildlife. Yesterday, Cottontop was back! He was posing — Look at me. Now look to the side! — until he got an itch.
Cottontop is the offspring between a wild mallard and a domestic crested duck. The domestic crested duck is all white with a cotton top and is descended from the mallard, making it natural to breed with wild mallards.
The cottontop is a genetic mutation that causes a deformity of the skull. When two crested ducks breed, 25% of the young will not have a cotton top, 50% will have cotton tops of various sizes, and 25% will die without hatching due to an exposed brain.
I first saw Cottontop back in February or March but had not seen him (could be a gal) since then. It’s nice to see him back because he’s unusual and all the little kids really like him.
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Posted on September 30, 2012, in Birds, Fauna, Mother & Father Nature, Photos, Picture of the Moment and tagged bird pictures, domestic crested duck pictures, la mesa pictures, lake murray pictures, san diego pictures. Bookmark the permalink. 26 Comments.