Readers’ wildlife photos

October 9, 2022 • 8:00 am

It’s Sunday, and yesterday John Avise sent his weekly selection of themed bird photos, so we shall have a wildlife post today. (We’ll resume the feature when I return to Chicago, assuming I’m still alive). John’s notes and IDs are indented, and you can enlarge his photos by clicking on them.

Cute Coot

The American Coot (Fulica americana) is arguably the easiest native bird to photograph here in Southern California, where nearly every urban park or golf-course pond typically has dozens of these denizens, especially during the winter months.  And, from its white bill to its red eyes to its black body to its greenish legs and lobed toes, each coot is indeed quite cute.

Coot swimming:

Another coot swimming:

Coot standing:

Another coot standing:

Coot head portrait:

Coot feet showing lobate toes:

The white spots on the rear are prominently displayed during courtship and during battles over dominance:

Coot chick:

Another coot chick:

Coot pre-teen:

Coot teenager:

Flock swimming:

Another flock swimming:

Flock standing:

Flock grazin’ in the grass:

8 thoughts on “Readers’ wildlife photos

  1. Very interesting birds, John. The chicks don’t seem to have the weird lobate toes shown in many of the adult pics. Are they present in chicks at all? Or do the lobes simply become more obvious against flatter surfaces?

    1. I suspect it’s probably a bit of both– the lobes become more prominent with age and certainly are easier to see against a flat surface.

  2. Loved them and thanks for these moments with nature Black coots against velvety blackened water, dressed for dinner–stunning. What a transformation from duckling to adult!

  3. Is it me or do they remind me of pigeons? My reading suggests they are not related, so I guess it’s just they eyes.

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