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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Another Duck for Prospect Park

The other morning I pedaled down to Prospect Lake to check on the waterfowl. With the opening in the ice expanding, a greater diversity of migrating ducks tend to stop off there at this time of year.

Every morning, Peter passes along the edge of Prospect Lake on his way to work. On Tuesday, as I was getting ready for my morning bike ride, he texted to alert all the Brooklyn birders that there was a Common Merganser on the lake. These large, mostly white ducks are usually found on fresh water lakes and ponds. Typically, we'll see one or two on Prospect Lake in the late-winter and they usually don't stay around for very long. I made it down to the lake in about 5 minutes.

Fog and drizzle made for terrible cycling conditions. It was also a real challenge taking an identifiable photo of the merganser, let alone a "good" photograph. I guess this one falls under the category "bad photos of good birds". The bird is still present as of this morning.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has a very informative waterfowl guide entitled "Ducks at a Distance: A Waterfowl Identification Guide". It is available online or as a download from this link.

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