[Tweeters] Common Eider Subspecies?

birdmarymoor at gmail.com birdmarymoor at gmail.com
Tue Jan 10 08:02:24 PST 2017

This raises the question: Is there any likelihood that the Purdy bird is
the same bird from Hayton Reserve in October?

= Michael Hobbs

-----Original Message-----
From: Joshua Glant
Sent: Tuesday, January 10, 2017 12:30 AM
To: Tweeters
Subject: [Tweeters] Common Eider Subspecies?

Hello Tweets,

I was looking at the photos taken today by Meghin Spencer of the Common
Eider at Purdy Spit, and I was struck by how rufous the bird's plumage
appeared - almost like the Atlantic Ocean subspecies "dresseri". A quick
Google inquiry of more "dresseri" photos, comparing both plumage coloration
and head/bill proportions, seemed to support my suspicion. I would be
interested in hearing the thoughts of other observers and perhaps of those
with more experience with Common Eider subspecies.

It is worth noting that the Pacific Coast has one previous accepted
"dresseri" record, of a female in November 2011 at Crescent City, CA. As
noted previously on Tweeters by Ryan Merrill, the Common Eider female seen
at Hayton Reserve on Fir Island back in October was an escaped female
"dresseri" from a nearby waterfowl collection. With both of these
occurrences in mind (and not necessarily resting any bias on either), it
will be interesting to confirm the subspecies of this Pierce Co. bird one
way or another!

Good birding, Joshua Glant
Mercer Island, WA
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