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Please Don’t Feed the Ducks!

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I like to take my morning runs around a scenic, little park in my hometown. This park is home to a pretty large lake, so naturally, tons of ducks, geese, and the odd heron have set up residence. People naturally congregate here as well—to walk their dogs, to run, to cycle, and to feed the birds all sorts of bread, table scraps, and even popcorn—despite several signs posted that ask visitors politely to, “Please refrain from feeding the waterfowl.”

So if you feed the ducks and geese at your local park—either for relaxation or to get them to have a meet-and-greet with your kids—here are six reasons you should STOP feeing the waterfowl…

 

1. Poor Nutrition

Before you toss your day-old crusty bread to the ducks, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation would like you to know that what you see as “helping the ducks” is actually doing them more harm than good.

Ducks and geese are meant to eat a variety of natural grains, aquatic plants, and invertebrates, which are high in the types of vitamins and nutrients they require. However, bread and popcorn are full of empty calories (and mostly void of protein), which can cause malnutrition, drooping wings, and weight gain.

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