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Bizarre Hybrids??


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I saw three possible Mallard hybrids today in western MA.  The first two (one picture each) look to me like maybe they have domestic Mallard ancestry.  The third (remaining pictures) has got me pretty curious.  Let me know what you think!

NOTE: All three were definitely Mallard-sized.

Thanks in advance!

TKbird

 

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Edited by TKbird
Reordering photos
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Thanks Kevin!  I got that picture last year at Sachuest Pt., RI, and it's still the only one I've seen!  I like yours too... we don't get many of those guys in MA.

Another birder I know has suggested that the last duck may just have Pekin ancestry; he says a Pintail hybrid would probably look more delicate.  Also neither he nor I can find any Mallard x Pintail photos that look close to this bird.  What do you guys think?

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6 hours ago, TKbird said:

Thanks Kevin!  I got that picture last year at Sachuest Pt., RI, and it's still the only one I've seen!  I like yours too... we don't get many of those guys in MA.

Another birder I know has suggested that the last duck may just have Pekin ancestry; he says a Pintail hybrid would probably look more delicate.  Also neither he nor I can find any Mallard x Pintail photos that look close to this bird.  What do you guys think?

There's a number of traits that point towards Northern Pintail but are inconsistent with domestic, such as the silver bill, long barred tail, and green speculum. There's no question that this bird has some amount of Northern Pintail in it. This bird is in the midst of molt, a fleeting period which likely explains both the oddity of this bird's appearance in relation to other Mallard x Northern Pintail hybrids as well as the scarcity of photos of similar birds.

Edited by Benjamin
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53 minutes ago, Benjamin said:

There's a number of traits that point towards Northern Pintail but are inconsistent with domestic, such as the silver bill, long barred tail, and green speculum. There's no question that this bird has some amount of Northern Pintail in it. This bird is in the midst of molt, a fleeting period which likely explains both the oddity of this bird's appearance in relation to other Mallard x Northern Pintail hybrids as well as the scarcity of photos of similar birds.

Thanks for the insights, Benjamin.

I've posted it on eBird as Mallard x Northern Pintail, so we'll see what the reviewer says!

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