Having all your ducks in a row doesn’t signify order after all. Apparently, one out of 10 duck couples is gay (oh, those fabulous mallards!), and regularly indulge in “attempted rape flights” when cruising other ducks. “Rape is a normal reproductive strategy in mallards,” explains Dutch researcher Kees Moeliker, who earned a Nobel Prize for discovering that rape and necrophilia are common activities on the pond. (The Guardian)
As he recounts in his seminal paper, The first case of homosexual necrophilia in the mallard anas platyrhynchos, he was in his office in the Natuurmuseum Rotterdam, when he was alerted by a bang to the fact a bird had crashed into the glass facade of the building. “I went downstairs immediately to see if the window was damaged, and saw a drake mallard (anas platyrhynchos) lying motionless on its belly in the sand, two metres outside the facade. The unfortunate duck apparently had hit the building in full flight at a height of about three metres from the ground. Next to the obviously dead duck, another male mallard (in full adult plumage without any visible traces of moult) was present. He forcibly picked into the back, the base of the bill and mostly into the back of the head of the dead mallard for about two minutes, then mounted the corpse and started to copulate, with great force, almost continuously picking the side of the head.
So, are they into rubber?