Sunday’s Duck o’ the Week

We continue with our weekly feature of “Duck o’ the week,” otherwise known as “Identify the species of duck”. The photos and (below the fold) the ID and duck notes come from evolutionary biologist John Avise, and I’ve added a range map.

 

 

 

 

Click “read more” to see the ID, some facts about this species, and a range map from the Cornell site.

Ring-necked Duck (Aythya collaris)

The name of this species is highly misleading because the birds typically have no discernible ring around the neck (in good light, the drake does show a faint chestnut collar).  Instead, both the drake and hen in breeding condition have a prominent white ring around the bill near its tip (and the hen also has a white eye-ring).  Unlike some of the other surface-diving ducks, this species prefers small, wooded
freshwater ponds.  The Ring-necked Duck has a continent-wide distribution, breeding across Canada and wintering across the southern United States, Mexico, and the Caribbean.

A range map:

 

5 Comments

  1. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted May 3, 2020 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    Me : I don’t see any ring on these ducks

    “The name of this species is highly misleading because the birds typically have no discernible ring around the neck ”

    Ah.

  2. rickflick
    Posted May 3, 2020 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    We saw a few of these during winter in Idaho. They often are mixed in with larger numbers of common golden eye and bufflehead ducks.

  3. ThyroidPlanet
    Posted May 3, 2020 at 8:24 am | Permalink

    An artistic comment:

    I love how the red eye is caught in the reflections

  4. Posted May 3, 2020 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Very interesting! Those are especially handsome ducks.

  5. Joe
    Posted May 3, 2020 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

    So, basically, a Canadian snowbird, wintering in Arizona, Florida, or Mexico, just like lots and lots of human “snowbirds”.
    Predict they will migrate as usual this fall–no sheltering in place. The humans, not so much.


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