Waterfowl

This week I have some images of waterfowl that are common visitors around Yellowknife in the breeding season.
I am still working on my duck identification skills however, these birds are some that I can readily identify in the field. It took some time to figure out how to differentiate the female Northern shovelers from the female mallards as their colouring is very similar and my eyes aren’t always able to discern the beak shape from a distance, even through binoculars.
 
The American Wigeon was one of the first ducks besides a mallard that I learned to identify. The blue/grey bill, size and their distinct whistling call made them one of the easier birds to pick out of a crowd of mixed waterfowl.
 
Mergansers were not as familiar to me as the common loon and learning to identify the two species we regularly have around Yellowknife was a bit of a challenge because they can look very similar. I caught a pair of red-breasted mergansers relaxing near Rotary Park in the evening light and was fortunate enough to snap a few images before they popped back into the water.
 
Finally the red-necked grebe is one of the most vociferous birds during the mating season and if you live anywhere near marshy water, it is likely that you have heard a pair vocalizing. I don’t really want to say singing because it’s more like a cross between a quack and a honk only longer and crabbier sounding.
 
That’s all for this week, I hope you enjoyed getting up close with these fowl birds