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Monday, March 14, 2016

Northern Shoveler

 
That little pond I pass on my normal road-loop walk is full of surprises. It's also quite far away from the actual road.

wetland

The good thing about that is wildlife seems to feel rather safe there. It's surrounded by cattail wetlands, and can't be approached without getting pretty wet, I think. The downside is that when I see something interesting there I have to go all the way out to include digital zoom to get pictures, which means the quality is lousy.

Nevertheless, today I saw a big white spot moving around out there. Can you see it?

wetland

At first I thought it was just some reflection, but it began to move! Looky, looky! It's a male northern shoveler duck. Yes, they are named that because of that huge spatulate bill.

northern shoveler duck

What a beautiful bird! Females are brown, but have that same huge bill. I did not see Mrs. Shoveler.

northern shoveler duck

This is the same pond where I've seen wood ducks, and a muskrat lodge. I may have to try to figure out how to get over into the evergreens on the far side. Warmer weather, old clothes, and junk shoes, I'm thinking. Of course, it's all private property, but maybe I can be stealthy.


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1 comments:

Secondary Roads said...

He is a beauty! I find the quality to be okay. I don't believe I ever seen one of these. I think they tend to prefer the lake a mile and a half from here or the pond a quarter mile from here. I did see a female (not sure of the species) in the yard last year.

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