The mallard or wild duck (Anas platyrhynchos) is a dabbling duck which breeds throughout the temperate and subtropical Americas, Europe, Asia, and North Africa, and has been introduced to New Zealand, Australia, Peru, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Chile, the Falkland Islands and South Africa.
The male birds (drakes) have a glossy green head and are grey on wings and belly, while the females (hens or ducks) have mainly brown-speckled plumage. Both sexes have an area of white-bordered black speculum feathers which commonly also include iridescent blue feathers especially among males. Mallards live in wetlands, eat water plants and small animals, and are social animals preferring to congregate in groups or flocks of varying sizes. This species is the main ancestor of most breeds of domesticated ducks.
When they pair off with mating partners, often one or several drakes end up “left out”. This group sometimes targets an isolated female duck, even one of a different species, and proceeds to chase and peck at her until she weakens, at which point the males take turns copulating with the female. Lebret (1961) calls this behaviour “Attempted Rape Flight” and Cramp & Simmons (1977) speak of “rape-intent flights”. Male Mallards also occasionally chase other male ducks of a different species, and even each other, in the same way.
Although this video can be quite disturbing, sadly this is how nature works. Because we are used to appreciate nature as a beautiful and pure thing, sometimes we forget its ruthless side, where only the strong survive. However, the guy in the park helped the mother and the ducklings saving most of them. Some may say he should have helped sooner, some may say he should have let nature be nature, it’s up to you to decide what would have been the right call.