johnd83 wrote:I have visit a number of country parks and lakes over the past week. I have seen many female mallards and young but I haven't seen a single male. Is this common or is there something different?
The male ducks(Drakes) at this time of year are in the moulting season. They moult firstly into whats known as the "eclipse" plumage which is quite similar to the female ducks and then later into their new plumage to set them up for the winter and the following breeding season. Because the eclipse plumage is not the full set of flight feathers they are more vulnerable to predators and therefore keep themselves out of sight as much as possible.