[Tweeters] Duck ID help?

Gene Beall gene.beall at gmail.com
Wed Jan 2 05:21:47 PST 2019

I got quite a few additional responses including these:

* The sloped forehead suggests a Common Goldeneye, and, in contrast,
the steepness of the forehead suggests a Barrow's Goldeneye.

* The relatively smaller size of the bill suggests a Barrow's

* The slightly pale spot at the base of the bill suggests a male.

* The gizz suggests a Common Goldeneye.

Looking over the identification guides for Common and Barrow's Goldeneyes at
the Cornell Lab of Ornithology leaves me undecided. On the one hand, the
picture and description found at the following link points to a female
Common Goldeneye:
. On the other hand, the dark bill and the pale spot at the base of the
bill leave me thinking it is possibly a young male of one or the other

For now, I think I'll follow the suggestion of one respondent and just leave
the identification as a Goldeneye.

Again, I thank all of you who have responded with ideas and suggestions! It
has been a great learning experience!

Gene Beall

Sammamish, WA

From: Gene Beall [mailto:gene.beall at gmail.com]
Sent: Tuesday, January 1, 2019 7:39 PM
To: 'Tweeters' <tweeters at u.washington.edu>
Subject: RE: [Tweeters] Duck ID help?

Wow, I got 8 quick reply's to my query and there was quite the variation.
Thank you all so very much! The answers included:

* 1 for young male Common Goldeneye

* 1 for female Goldeneye. Not sure which one

* 2 for young (first year) male Barrow's Goldeneye

* 4 for female Common Goldeneye

Thus, it appears to be a goldeneye, but which one and which sex?

It was the whitish breast and black bill that were throwing me and keeping
me from thinking it was a Goldeneye in the first place. However, given the
consensus that it is a Goldeneye, I conclude that the brown head indicates a
young bird and the whitish breast indicates a male. As for Common vs.
Barrow's, it would seem to come down to the shape of the head and looking at
the three photos, honestly I can't see that it clearly points to one or the
other. I'd be happy to be educated on how to distinguish that and I welcome
further conversation to draw a definitive conclusion.

Thank you again to all those who responded thus far!!

Gene Beall

Sammamish, WA

From: Tweeters [mailto:tweeters-bounces at mailman11.u.washington.edu] On
Behalf Of Gene Beall
Sent: Tuesday, January 1, 2019 5:40 PM
To: 'Tweeters' <tweeters at u.washington.edu <mailto:tweeters at u.washington.edu>


Subject: [Tweeters] Duck ID help?

Could someone please help me with identifying this duck?

This individual was hanging out with a bunch of Greater Scaup and
Ring-necked ducks at Ocean Shores at the south end of the grand canal where
it outflows to the bay.

Thank you!

Gene Beall

Sammamish, WA

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