Interactions: What is the Mallard associated with?

The Mallard is often associated with hunting. Although hunting is regarded as a sport that helps to control animal populations, the human interaction has been felt in a couple different ways. Hunters used to use a lot of lead and copper shot before switching to steel shot while hunting these birds. The problem with this use of copper and lead is that lead shot has led to poisoning of these birds. Since the Mallards often consume small hard items to aid in the breakdown of food in the gizzard, they would consume these lead pellets and eventually absorb it and become poisoned. Copper shot is also poisonous to ducks that feed on corn.

Hunting these animals is not their greatest threat from humans. Destruction of their natural habitats is the greatest threat to Mallard survival. Deforestation and destruction of wetlands has greatly reduced the area in which these birds reside and raise their young.

Mallards are a food source for many predators such as the Gray Wolf, the Snapping Turtle, and the Bald Eagle.
Personal Photo of Congregating Ducks
As seen in their
reproductive habits, the Mallard will often mingle with other ducks that are similar to their species since they have been known to interbreed. They can also been spotted with ducks that have less relation to them. Mallards, along with most ducks in general, are attracted to areas with other ducks, especially during migration. This is true because when the climate is cool, open waterways with a food supply are highly desirable, and ducks will flock together wherever there is food and water during this time.

Mallards share their habitat with numerous other animals considering they inhabit a fairly popular and prevalent habitat in the northern hemisphere. Mallards can be commonly found in the same areas in North America as Whitetail Deer

Some species of hematazoans have been recorded as having a parasitic relationship with the Mallard by infecting the blood. Another blood parasite is the Trypanosoma avium, but does not appear to be overly prevalent in Mallards. It can be transmitted via mosquitoes and black flies.

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