Yes, winter ...
On 3/31/2013 8:58 PM, Jane Stein wrote:
> Were those Ruddys at McCuen still in winter plumage?
> They're nifty critters at any time, but a friend of mine once
> described them as looking like mini thermonuclear explosions when
> steaming towards you in breeding plumage, which I agree with. Worth
> going way out of your way to see.
> On 3/31/2013 8:47 PM, Ian A. Worley wrote:
>> With many open water areas now expanding in Lake Champlain south of the
>> Champlain Bridge, Ron Payne and I today visited 10 locations from
>> Plunder Bay in Orwell north to McCuen Slang in Addison. Waves and heat
>> distortion made impossible identifying and counting the many hundreds of
>> ducks that swam at distances greater than a half a mile at several
>> viewing sites, but there were lots of closer birds for good viewing.
>> Highlights were 7 Ruddy Ducks in a cove at McCuen Slang, a Black Scoter
>> flying rapidly northward low over the water past Lapham Bay, a
>> Pied-billed Grebe at Plunder Bay, an Osprey with fish atop a utility
>> pole near Stony Cove, and an Eastern Meadowlark near Larrabee's Point
>> fishing access.
>> Waterfowl were diverse, as we saw 19 species:
>> Canada Goose
>> Snow Goose (7 in a Bridport field)
>> Wood Duck
>> American Wigeon
>> American Black Duck
>> Northern Pintail
>> Green-winged Teal
>> Ring-necked Duck
>> Greater Scaup
>> Lesser Scaup
>> Black Scoter
>> Common Goldeneye
>> Hooded Merganser
>> Common Merganser
>> Ruddy Duck
>> Pied-billed Grebe
>> Saw a total of 19 Bald Eagles for the day. In our travels we also
>> recorded 13 Red-tailed Hawks, 6 Kestrels, 2 Harriers, 2 Turkey Vultures,
>> a Rough-legged Hawk, and the previously mentioned Osprey.
>> Overall, we tallied 55 species for the day.