One drake, many hens. Help me figure this out :)
Mid-May last year, a duck hatched 8 ducklings beneath an elephant ear plant about 2 feet from the deep end of our pool.
This year, in late-March, a duck returned (not sure if it is the same one, but I imagine it is). She and the drake spend all day in the pool occasionally flying off to find food. On one occasion, while they were swimming in the pool, another female duck came from out of the nest and jumped into the pool. The drake chased and flew after her.
When we have large gatherings at our house, they often fly over our yard several times without landing but it is not just the two of them. There is the hen, the drake, and a small distance behind them, another duck. These 3 seem to travel together.
Yesterday, one duckling hatched, and the new family spent the day together. Meanwhile, a second female was sitting on the nest behind the pool (we saw her). There are still 7 eggs.
Today, there was quite a commotion in the pool. We thought it was a duck fight. When we went outside, we saw the drake, the mother and duckling AND TWO other female ducks. The drake chased after each of them. They would then fly back over the fence and into the pool. The drake had to do this several times until these other two females were finally gone.
My theory is that all of these ducks are from the eggs hatched last year, and perhaps some of them are staying together.
What on earth is going on here? haha Where are all of these female ducks coming from and why?