City Manager Pat McGinnis was wondering the same thing. He referred me to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources for an expert answer.
Nick Kalejs, a wildlife biologist for the DNR stationed in Muskegon, is fairly certain that the lack of ducks on the boardwalk and Chinook Pier this year is due to the recent construction activity at the Municipal Marina. It at least had some affect on the ducks, he said.
But Kalejs is also certain that the Grand Haven waterfront’s lack of ducks is in no way related to the recent waterfowl die-offs in West Michigan.
Larger, diving ducks did starve this past winter because of the persistent ice and resulting lack of food to support them, Kalejs said. Those are not the mallards that we typically see along the Grand Haven channel.
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