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Hoodies At Sunset

A pair of migrant Hooded Mergansers made my evening today. These are usually fairly skittish ducks--indeed, the other three on the pond immediately took off when I arrived--but this pair stayed, and cordially ignored me. The longer I lingered the tamer they got.

As usual, these are all available at higher res on my gallery site, by clicking on the thumbnails.

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Male hoodies flash their oversized white hoods to impress the ladies--although this particular female seems sufficiently impressed already!

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Three more coming in for a landing (perhaps the same three who flushed when I arrived?) The golden eyes and black bills on the first and third betray them as yearling males, not females. These may well be siblings. They probably won't breed until their second year, when the young males will acquire their mature plumage.

There's a special pleasure for a nature photographer when your subjects are relaxed enough to fall asleep in front of you.

Welcome back, Red-Winged BlackbirdsFor ilanikhan