Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Birds of the Disneyland Resort, They Are Not Just in the Tiki Room

The Birds of the Disneyland Resort, They Are Not Just in the Tiki Room

I read an article in a newspaper online in the past few days and it got me thinking. The story was about the fact there are few or no pigeons at Disneyland.

I had noticed this myself over the years. This article gave several suggestions as to why this was the case. They suggested Disney as so unrevealed project in place such as wild cats allowed to roam the park to catch them. There are in fact many wild cats in the parks but, I don’t think that is the answer. Another suggestion was birds of prey set in places where they could scare off the pigeons. I don’t ever recall seeing a bird of prey around the parks. I don’t think this is the case as there are ducks and sea gulls at the parks. (More about this later.) It could be that the parks are kept so clean the pigeons have lost interst. I am more inclined to think a combination of how clean the park is and the ducks and gulls being there is more of why there are no pigeons. Ducks are very territorial.  I believe Sea Gulls are also territorial. They would tend to chase off smaller birds such as pigeons.

       The ducks of Disneyland are unique. There are various types of ducks in the park. From the mallard to the wood duck along with a few coots the waters of Disneyland are filled with beautiful and interesting birds to watch. What makes them unique is a good number of them do not migrate as their species normally does. With the overall mild climate of California, protection of the Disney Security and other Cast Members and a constant supply of food they have no reason to migrate during the winter.

This has lead to some interesting things happening. I’ve seen teams of security guards surrounding mama ducks and their broods of ducklings as they walk through a crowd of guests to get to one of the many bodies of water in the park. Once we were watching Fantasmic and during the climatic sequence with the dragon Maleficent setting the Rivers of America on fire we look into the projected fire in the middle of the rifer and see the shadow of a family of ducks going through the flames! I’ve spent many happy hours just watching the ducks swim the Rivers of America as I waited for Fantasmic.

Disney California Adventure does not have many ducks. In fact I hardly ever see a duck there. Instead we see lots of Sea Gulls splashing in the water of Paradise Pier. You hear their calls as you wait for the rides and stroll through the park. There are “seasons” when the Gulls go and the Ducks seem to replace them for a short time. In among the Ducks and Gulls at both parks you will find some Finches and Sparrows. All are a joy to watch.

Now about those cats. Yes, Disney has cats running around the parks. These are wild cats and there are unconfirmed rumors that Disney supplies these cats with some food. It is also rumored they catch these cats every so often and give them vacations and medical care as needed to insure their health. I believe Disney allows these feline visitors to stay to keep the rodent population to a minimum. I once saw about 15 of the beautiful animals sunning on the side of Grizzly Peak. There were some mama’s with young ones there.

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