It’s time again for John Avise‘s patented Duck O’ the Day, presented every Sunday until we run out of duck species found in North America. (I think we have about two more months.) Your job is to guess the species. After you try, go below the fold to see the ID, John’s Fun Duck Facts about the species, and a range map.
Here we go.
Drake head on:
Click “read more” for the ID, duck facts, and a range map.
Common Goldeneye (Bucephala clangula)
Adults of both sexes do indeed have striking “golden” eyes. The male also has a round white spot on the face that can be visible even at a distance when it swims or flies (see photo) across a large body of water. This species of diving duck must hold dual-citizenship in North America because it breeds across most of Canada, winters across most of the United States, and might be found year-round only near the border between these two countries. Nests are usually in tree cavities in northern boreal forests adjacent to lakes or rivers. Like many other surface-diving ducks, its diet consists primarily of invertebrate animals including crustaceans, mollusks, and aquatic insects.
A range map from the Cornell bird site: