Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Common Merganser

The Common Merganser (Scientific name - Mergus merganser) is the largest of the mergansers found in North America. It is a diving duck that feeds mostly on small fish, crustaceans, and mollusks.  They are found throughout North America, with a summer range as far as the Yukon and Alaska and in winter as far south as Mexico. The male has a dark green head with a reddish orange bill; he has a white breast and undersides and a dark back with a grey tail. The female has a grey body with a red crested head and white chest.
Photos were taken in Abbotsford, B.C. in January 2014.

Male in Flight


Male showing green head

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Hooded Merganser

The Hooded Merganser (Scientific name - Lophodytes cucullatus) is the smallest of the mergansers. The males and the females both have crests that they can raise or flatten.  This species is found in both the Eastern and Western parts of North America. They are medium distance migrants and many stay resident if the waters remain ice free. The males are very distinctive with a black and white head and black and white back and brown undersides. The females are mainly shades of brown and grey. 
Photos were taken at Mill Lake, Abbotsford, British Columbia in January 2014. 


Golden-crowned Sparrow

The Golden-crowned Sparrow (Scientific name - Zonotrichia atricapilla) is a ground foraging sparrow found along the Pacific Coast of North America from Alaska and as far South as Baja California.  It is distinguished by it's yellow crown which becomes more predominate in breeding males. 
Photos taken in January 2014 at Elgin Heritage Park, Surrey, B.C.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Barrow's Goldeneye

The Barrow's Goldeneye (Scientific name - Bucephala islandica) is a medium sized diving duck. It is found primarily in the Western part of North America near the Pacific Coast and breeds as far north as Alaska and the Yukon Territory.  There is a smaller population on the East Coast .

The Barrow's Goldeneye male is predominately black and white with a purple gloss to the head. There is a distinctive bold white facial crescent and white "piano key" marlins on it's sides. The female is duller in colour with a brown head and a brownish grey body.

Male and Female
 Photos taken in January 2014 
at Stanley Park, Vancouver, B.C.

Chestnut-backed Chickadee

The Chestnut-backed Chickadee (Scientific name - Poecile rufescens) is the smallest of all the chickadees. They are found along the Pacific Coast of North America from Alaska down to California. They are identifiable from their rich chestnut coloured back.

Photos taken in January 2014 near Beaver Lake, Stanley Park, Vancouver, B.C.