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gstacks

Bad picture of a merganser

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31 minutes ago, Seattle said:

Looks like a female hooded merganser

 

Hooded and Common Mergansers would have straighter, stouter bills. This bird actually looks better for a Red-breasted Merganser to me, which would be a nice bird for your area.

Wait for more opinions.

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I do not have any experience with Red-breasted but that was my thought, too, with that long, thin, upturned bill, which appears to be reddish orange.

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I flagged this photo in eBird as being possibly mis-identified. First off, I think that we can all agree that it is an immature, as if the bird were any older, the ID would be obvious to all. The head shape looks reasonable for an immature Hooded, though the somewhat bifurcated appearance of the crest suggests Red-breasted. The bill does seem a tad long for Hooded, but I cannot rule out a photographic artifact. If I stare at the photo long enough, I see what seems like a yellowish eye, perhaps surrounded by dark feathering. Unfortunately, that's not helpful, as Red-breasted's start out with yellow eyes and male Hoodeds get yellow eyes. However, just the fact that the eye color is not obvious leads me to be cautious about any interpretation of that eye color.

I would prefer to see more photos of this individual, as single photos can be SO misleading. Until then, I'm happy with "merganser sp."

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4 hours ago, Tony Leukering said:

I flagged this photo in eBird as being possibly mis-identified. First off, I think that we can all agree that it is an immature, as if the bird were any older, the ID would be obvious to all. The head shape looks reasonable for an immature Hooded, though the somewhat bifurcated appearance of the crest suggests Red-breasted. The bill does seem a tad long for Hooded, but I cannot rule out a photographic artifact. If I stare at the photo long enough, I see what seems like a yellowish eye, perhaps surrounded by dark feathering. Unfortunately, that's not helpful, as Red-breasted's start out with yellow eyes and male Hoodeds get yellow eyes. However, just the fact that the eye color is not obvious leads me to be cautious about any interpretation of that eye color.

I would prefer to see more photos of this individual, as single photos can be SO misleading. Until then, I'm happy with "merganser sp."

Interesting thoughts. If you take about an inch and a half off the bill (as it appears here) everything else seems at least decent for Hooded, no? Tough photo.

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