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smittyone@cox.net

What kind of ducks will these grow up to be?

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I saw these three baby ducks paddling together in an inlet to Lake DeSoto this afternoon.  When they didn't feel threatened, they came close to shore.  Near shore they were feeding on something under water, rarely bringing their heads above water.  I saw no adult ducks in the area.  But both Wood Ducks and Blue-winged Teal frequent this part of the lake.  They look what I'd imagine baby Mergansers would look like.  But I don't know what a baby Merganser looks like, and haven't seen any adult Mergansers in a while.

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I agree.  They look just like pictures on line, and in the close-ups you can see the "saw teeth".

Where are their parents?  Standards are slipping these days.

Great pictures!

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2 minutes ago, smittyone@cox.net said:

Thanks everyone.

Pay no mind to me...seems everyone thinks they are Hooded...well, they are mergansers for sure, lol! 🙂 

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, lonesome55dove said:

I think they are Common Merganser because they have dark eyes and not yellow eyes like Hooded Mergansers do. 

So this is actually a really interesting point, and I did some digging on eBird. Turns out male Hooded Mergansers have light yellow eyes while females have dark.

But it gets more interesting than that- if you filter Hooded Merganser photos on eBird by sex, there are a large number of photos of what are seemingly female birds with light eyes, like maybe 1/10th of all female Hooded Merganser photos. But these are actually either eclipse males or young males- notice how all birds with very light eyes also have a completely dark bill. It's kind of crazy that even in very high rated and ranked photos a huge number of the birds are actually mis-IDed.

Also, all very young Hooded Mergansers have dark eyes, much like these birds. Very cute.

Edited by Benjamin
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22 minutes ago, Benjamin said:

So this is actually a really interesting point, and I did some digging on eBird. Turns out male Hooded Mergansers have light yellow eyes while females have dark.

But it gets more interesting than that- if you filter Hooded Merganser photos on eBird by sex, there are a large number of photos of what are seemingly female birds with light eyes, like maybe 1/10th of all female Hooded Merganser photos. But these are actually either eclipse males or young males- notice how all birds with very light eyes also have a completely dark bill. It's kind of crazy that even in very high rated and ranked photos a huge number of the birds are actually mis-IDed.

Also, all very young Hooded Mergansers have dark eyes, much like these birds. Very cute.

Thank you for this info. After looking at more photos I see the difference between the Common and Hooded...and agree with Hooded.  🙂

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