Stanley is back: Season two of Central Duck-cam starts now

Marisa Nadolny

She’s back, and she’s brought a friend.

Stanley, Central’s seasonal resident duck, returned to campus earlier this month and has set up a new nest in preparation for her next brood. Tune in to the Central Duck-cam to watch her progress.

This spring, a second female mallard followed Stanley’s lead and established her own nest in the same secluded area. Naturally, she’s going to need a name, so stay tuned for the upcoming Name the Central Duck contest on our social media channels. (Find Central @ccsu_official on Instagram and TikTok, @CCSU on X, and @CentralConnecticutStateUniversity on Facebook.)

For the fourth spring running, female mallards have set up housekeeping on the Central campus in a location that provides excellent shelter from predators and limited human interaction. 

Stanley is one of several mallards that were caught and tagged by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) at Stanley Quarter Park in New Britain. DEEP is monitoring ducks as part of an initiative to assess mallards’ nesting success, including brood movement and habitat selection. Stanley was tagged in September 2022, and DEEP named her after the park. 

The typical incubation period for ducks is 26 days. Stanley was first spotted on her nest this year in early April — about two weeks earlier than last year. At last count, she had produced seven eggs. Before the big day, viewers might see Stanley turn her eggs and tuck them back in to her nest.

The nest’s location doesn’t offer a direct exit route for pre-fledge ducklings, so when the time comes, Central staff members will help Stanley move her ducklings back to Stanley Quarter Park. 

In the meantime, Central Environmental Health and Safety Coordinator Kelly Selby has ensured the Duck-cam’s placement will not disturb Stanley and her friend or alert predators to their location.

Last year, Stanley’s story inspired the Central Marketing & Communications team to launch a social media campaign. The social posts earned a Merit Award in the 2024 Educational Advertising Awards competition.

View the livestream on YouTube. (Note: Stanley occasionally leaves the nest to feed, so viewers should check back a little later if she's not on camera.)