Saturday, March 06, 2010

Scoter suite and a bonus duck

On a recent trip to Barnegat, New Jersey, we were fortunate to see all three types of scoters, plus plenty of other sea ducks. The scoters, as a group, are a really unusual-looking set of birds. One of the people we were with said that since we'd seen all three types, it made the "suite."

The surf scoter is probably the oddest of all of them, with an oversized bill and dots of contrasting colors on its head. But even the plain plumage of the black scoter comes with a big orange, oddly shaped bill. These two scoters are in the above picture, and that's about as close as they came in to the jetty's rocks. A friendly white-winged scoter, though, sidled right up and posed for a group of photographers, most of them shooting with cameras and lenses right out of what my Dad would have. The ice blue eye was really striking when seen this closely.

And here's the bonus, a long-tailed duck drake. You can just make out the two extra-long tail feathers in the photo. One of my favorite birds of the day!

1 comment:

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