Many ducks call San Diego home during fall, winter and spring, while others stay in the area to breed during summer. Lucky for your little duckling, a variety of species can be seen shaking their tail feathers at San Diego lakes and ponds throughout the year. Here are our favorite duck ponds that will have your little ones quacking with delight!

Discovery Lake

Photo credit: Elizabeth Silva

Discovery Lake
Nestled in the Discovery Hills neighborhood of San Marcos, Discovery Lake is a treat for families looking for a hidden gem. This 5-acre lake is surrounded by tall vegetation and sweeping mountain views. Your flock can enjoy checking out the ducks from a dock that extends into the lake. Afterward, waddle the short, paved loop around the lake or have a little fun at the adjacent playground and fountain.

650 Foxhall Dr.
San Marcos, Ca

Hendrix Pond

Photo credit: Elizabeth Silva

Hendrix Pond
A little known secret to Scripps Ranch residents, Hendrix Pond is tucked away from plain view. If quiet and calm is your thing, this serene little spot is perfect for day tripping with your brood. Check out the ducks, fish from the shore, or walk the trail around the pond. You’ll find benches and picnic tables throughout the area, so pack a lunch! If you’re a lucky duck, you may even see the heron and egrets that frequent this pond.

9850 Caminito Marlock
Scripps Ranch, Ca

Lake Murray

Photo credit: J. LaHaye

Lake Murray
At over 171 surface acres and 3.2 shoreline miles, Lake Murray Reservoir is one of San Diego’s most popular destinations for all things outdoor: boating, fishing, rollerblading, bicycling, picnicking – and of course – ducks galore! Your baby mallard will enjoy spotting a wide variety of ducks and geese while you take in breathtaking views of mountains, vegetation, and countless species of birds. Keep an eye out for the elusive turkey vultures and white chickens!

5540 Kiowa Dr.
La Mesa, Ca

Webb ParkPhoto credit: Elizabeth Silva

Webb Park
A hidden retreat right in the heart of Rancho Bernardo, Webb Park ­features – what else – webbed feet! Ideal for spotting ducks, kicking back with turtles and picnicking, this scenic park is perfect for snapping a few photos of your kiddos. If you’re feeling patriotic, visit the Veterans’ Memorial which honors those who have served in the military. If you’re looking for a little exercise, walk or jog around the pond’s paved path. If you’re up for some additional fun, check out Pearl, a Chinese restaurant just behind the park.

16826 Bernardo Center Dr.
Rancho Bernardo, Ca

Lake MiramarPhoto credit: Elizabeth Silva 

Lake Miramar
Centrally located for San Diegans, Lake Miramar is a hotspot for walking, jogging, bicycling, fishing, boating and feeding ducks and geese. This lake boasts a 5-mile paved path, picnic tables, barbeques, concessions, rentals, and free parking. What’s not to love? You’ll find ducks all around the lake, but the best spot is at the dock where hungry ducks wait in anticipation. Need some duck food? Stop by the “Friends of the Library” book shop at Scripps Library and purchase a bag of duck food for $1.

10710 Scripps Lake Dr.
Scripps Ranch, Ca

Dixon LakePhoto credit: Elizabeth Silva

Dixon Lake
If you’re looking for a duck viewing adventure, get all your little ducks in a row and head over to Dixon Lake. Situated just southeast of Daley Ranch in Escondido, this campground has it all: picnicking, fishing, boating, rentals, concessions and lots and lots of ducks. Rent a paddle boat and check out the ducks from the center of the lake. Make sure to have your cameras ready as the ducks will paddle over with all their feathered friends!

1700 La Honda Dr.
Escondido, Ca

Insider Tips

  • For an educational twist, your little one can try identifying duck species by their look and sound. For a quick reference guide, check out Ducks Unlimited.
  • Most people offer ducks bread to eat, but did you know that they prefer cracked corn, oats, chopped vegetables, and lettuce leaves? For healthier duck-friendly treats, try these safer alternatives.

Where do you like to spot ducks and geese? Did we miss your favorite spot?

— Elizabeth Silva