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Mexican/American Black Duck

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Hi all,
I saw this pair earlier today in the mountains of CO. Pretty sure this is a MEDU, but it is very dark blackish-brown versus the brown with rufous tones that I am familiar with in MEDU. Also, I'm not really seeing the internal markings on the body feathers. Date and location strongly support MEDU, as does the buffy throat/head versus cold grayish. Thanks!




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The buffy aspect to the head suggests the possibility of Mottled genes, as does the short eyeline. The male is an ugly bird that I'd be leery of pigeon-holing into a particular species entry. I suggest Mexican/Mottled (or whatever the eBird entry is). From the few eBird photos from the region, west Texas seems to have a plethora of Mexican x Mottled. What a mess!

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