I was looking, unsuccessfully, for a new kind of butterfly
to take a
picture of, and practicing with my still new enough that I need a lot of
practice camera, when these two ducks flew over and landed side by side
right in front of me. I wish I'd been quicker with the camera, but at
least I took two pictures before they got out of range. Here is the
larger view of each of the two photos, and full size crops of the ducks
Since I'm not a bird expert, I emailed Wendy to find out what my ducks
were. Here's her reply: "Your
ducks I think are American Black Ducks...yes, I know they are brown in
color but that's what they call them. These were difficult because you
only had pictures of the heads. If they are American black ducks (and
they are ALL over the place) then I would guess that the one with the
yellow beak is female and the one with the orange beak is a male.
Also..... in case you can get a shot of the tail feathers.... they
should have white tail feathers. If the tail feathers are all dark then
you might have a Mottled Duck.
I posted an ID request for the Eastern
and got a lot of feedback on my ducks. AlexC posted a great explanation
of why he thinks my ducks are Mottled - thanks Alex! I photographed them
Thursday, March 06, 2008 in Palm Beach County, Florida. I'm no birder
(laughing as I say that after several days of stalking birds with my
camera), but as I dip my feet into birding, the first thing I've noticed
is that the first question that comes up when I ask for help identifying
a bird from a photograph is, "Where and when did you take the picture?"
After AlexC posted, cajanuma and birderbf joined
the discussion, so I
want to thank all three of them, and Wendy, for helping me figure out my
ducks: Thanks folks!
I did not repeat the details of the answers I got on the bird forum
here because I think it's fair and appropriate to send you to their site
to view it for yourself (as much as it pains me to say that because I'd
love to have visitors here too:)