Skua, i need your expertise again. any ideas what kind?
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Nick,i will use that if skua does not weigh in.
<br />GH,it is amazing,and more so, is the fact i did not get hit. here is another if you are interested.
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Wow!! I know when I had that flock of sparrows flying around my yard, I was definitely grateful for my pool cage as I could hear little bbs hitting the screen! Amazingly when I went out and braved being near the birds (shades of Alfred Hitchcok's
The Birds dancing in my head), I managed to avoid the bbs. ;)
That's easy. It's an Egyptian Goose having a bad hair day.
Check out http://www.birdsofbritain.co.uk/bird-guide/egyptian-goose.htm. That's the first page that came up when I googled.
Grass Hopper, did you mean Swallows rather than Sparrows? Are you referring to that swarm of Tree Swallows you photographed? Coincidentally I was in South Florida earlier this month and saw the same thing: hundreds of Tree Swallows swarming around a tree. I would have been stunned had you not shared that phenomenon with us.
My wife and I were visiting her mother in Sun City Center outside Tampa, but most of the week was spent on Marco Island, where my wife attended a conference and I went birding (rough, but somebody has to do it). I keep meaning to post a few photos, but they're at home and I'm at work. And home is just a dial up connection, so...
Well,here is another mystery bird. i know the left is a mandarin,but what about the right?
<br />I realize i could search myself,but i have no idea were to even start with these guys.
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After finishing up a busy week I was sitting here clicking on different links in my Bookmarks. I ended up at this thread. My husband came in as I was viewing some of Donald's images and was totally awestruck. He was enjoying Donald's images so much that I got a longer back rub than usual as he looked at them over my shoulder. He says you're a brilliant photographer Donald.
Here is a shot from last nights late winter snow. hopefully the last this season.
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Have not even tried yet. i am trying to be very optimistic about everything working out, but after 18 years of trying,i am very very guarded about getting to wound up. i am a nervous wreck and am very protective and overly watchful of everything. she has been tossing names around and as it gets closer,i will get on the stick.
Skua, i talked to the man that owns the pond i shoot at. he said that duck is an Eytons tree duck. I dont know if you remember that mallard like duck with the magenta/purplish head i posted. i think he said it was called a brewers duck, and i also think he said it was a mallard /gadwall hybrid, but i get confused sometimes. he is a spectacular taxidermist who has these,and he studies there appearance to get it right.
He told me today that the eytons duck is unfortunately going to be mounted sometime in the future. he said he cannot do it, but the owner wants it mounted,so thats a bit sad. he also wants to get in some buffleheads,but he says they are kinda clumsy and the first ones a hawk would get,so he is afraid to get them. he wanted to get harlequins also,but he said a pair of those runs 4 grand,so he will skip that.
Interesting, Donald. A web search for Eyton's Tree Duck confirms his I.D. (of course, he should know, huh?). That's a species I'd never heard of before.
I also haven't heard of Brewer's Duck, but the concept of naming hybrids is long established. There are some hybrid North American warblers that occur often enough to have acquired names; often, it wasn't clear whether the hybrid was a new species or not when they were originally described.
I would think that keeping Harlequins would be difficult. They breed on fast-flowing mountain streams and spend the rest of the year along rocky sea coasts. How would someone approximate those habitats in captivity? But perhaps they're more adaptable than I know.
That's quite a resource you have there. Here's a question: do you know if he pinions his ducks? That is, have the wings been clipped so that they are permanently unable to fly? One of the really tough subjects in birding is how to determine if the occurrence of unusual waterfowl is the result of natural vagrancy (I mean that in the biological sense of "wandering", not in the human sense of "homeless") or an escape from captivity. It's often impossible to know, especially in those cases where the bird shows no signs of having been captive (unusual feather wear, leg bands, etc.).
Not sure about the clipping thing, but i think some may be. not all fly away from the pond when scared,but i know he commented that the one with the magenta head is fairly rare and he is fully capable of flying,so he worries he will get shot. he said some have even offered money to take that one out. its a funny situation,because he is a taxidermist,but he is very into nature and has great concern for his ducks.
He told me keeps some in the large netted enclosure till they breed once and then he moves them to the main pond to give them their freedom.
I was wondering does the term hybrid have a bad connotation with it? are those ducks considered rejects,or amazing works of nature? i never knew different species could create another altogether.
Well i appreciate the consideration to fill in some conversation about me. if i ever come to florida, maybe we can do the same, but with a youngster on the way, i am afraid my travel adventures may be getting fewer.
Yes,i would not have it any other way, but at my age,it will be physically tougher than if i was twenty years old. i have been shooting like a maniac recently,and i think its my minds way of preparing me for days of diapers instead of shooting. better get as much in now before i am exhausted.