Mute Swan on the Fox River at Frame Park in Waukesha on February 27, 2021

One of my birding stops today gave nice views of a Mute Swan at Frame Park on the Fox River  in Waukesha. The river was almost wide open around noon when I was there. There were some ducks present but off a ways, species I saw were Common Goldeneye, Lesser Scaup, Common Merganser, Hooded Merganser and of course Mallards. A location that should be watched closely as ducks were coming and going and it is that time of the year. A beautiful February day with temps around 50 degrees and sunny skies.

The Mute Swan…

A little preening…

Harlequin Duck at Port Washington in Ozaukee County Wisconsin on December 28, 2020

The 1st year male Harlequin Duck put on a nice show today at Port Washington. It hung with Mallards feeding, resting and moving around near the north beach area. For the most part it would be in the middle of the groups of Mallards, must have made it feel safe or one of them. An exciting visiting bird. It was a cold day with the wind on the water, the sunny skies did help. Images were taken on December 28, 2020.

The Harlequin Duck, 1st year male…

The Harlequin Ducks habitat of fast moving water and rocks, this was close to that…

Getting something to eat…

Just moving around…

Giving a nice look here…

Long-tailed Duck at Port Washington in Ozaukee County Wisconsin on December 26, 2020

A stop today at Port Washington gave nice looks a Long-tailed Duck. This stunning male has been seen for a few days on and off recently. It fed many times on fish while I was present. It was a cloudy day, very cold around 18 degrees when I arrived. A slight wind which just made it feel colder. Images were taken on December 26 and 28th, 2020.

Long-tailed Duck, male

A nice look!

Coming in to feed…

Coming in…

When it dives for food, it appears it gets fish 50% of the time…

That long tail, wow!

Long-tailed Duck on December 28 with some sun…

Long-tailed Duck on December 28 with some sun taking off…

Black-bellied Whistling Duck at Washington Park in Milwaukee Wisconsin on May 27, 2020

Word was out that a Black-bellied Whistling-Duck, male was at Washington Park in Milwaukee. The normal range for this species is lower Texas and the coasts of Mexico. I had just got home from birding Lake Park in Milwaukee but not the first time I had to go back the same day for a bird. When I arrived at the park birders were gathered talking among themselves and the bird was located near them in the lagoon. The duck just sat there with a pair of Mallards. I asked no action? They said this is what this species does, just sits around for the most part. The duck moved to the other side of the lagoon following the Mallards. Thanks to all who found the duck and who got the word out for others to see. Not a life bird but I only saw a wing of this species at Horicon a few years ago as one was flying off. Nice to see this beauty close up. It was a beautiful day, just bordering hot, some sun, a little breeze. Images were taken on May 27, 2020.

The Black-bellied Whistling-Duck, male…

Hanging out with the Mallards…

Tufted Duck at Fresh Air Park in Winnebago County Wisconsin on April 16, 2020

Trying for the male Tufted Duck today was worth the almost 2 hour trip. This Eurasian species, very rare for the state, even North America was very exciting to finally see. On arriving at Fresh Air Park, the word was the duck had not been seen for a least an hour. Not what I wanted to hear, but doing some scoping along with other birders, I think his name was Dave from Baraboo spotted the duck! It was down shore a long ways and out from shore too. The duck went out a long ways and returned a few more times to shore but never close. It hung with some scaups a couple of times but for the most part stayed by itself. On one of its return to shore runs I snapped a couple of photos. I felt the photo was good enough for a ID shot and a memory. I tried for a Tufted Duck last year way up north on the Mississippi but missed on it, it was nice to get the bird finally on my list. Life bird for the state of Wisconsin #348. A big thank you to Jim M for finding, ID-ing the bird, getting word out and letting birders onto their property. It was a sunny day, winds not bad and temps around 40 degrees. Image was taken on April 16, 2020.

The Tufted Duck, male

Wood Ducks in Milwaukee County Wisconsin on April 9, 2020

One of my birding stops today gave nice looks at a pair of Wood Ducks. They were just swimming around doing their thing while I patiently observed their actions. The nice light this morning brought out the very best in Wood Duck breeding colors. It was a cool morning to start with stiff winds, never really got pleasant out. Images were taken on April 9, 2020.

Wood Duck, the male…

Wood Duck, the female…

Back view, beautiful too…

Hooded Merganser at the Fox River in Waukesha Wisconsin on March 22, 2020

One of my birding stops today was at the Fox River in downtown Waukesha. As I came around the corner in the car standing in front of me in the middle of the road, a Hooded Merganser, a male with a female Mallard. Is this “Hollyhood”?? Before I got parked both ducks were off into the middle of the river being ducks. The Hooded Merganser seemed to be checking out numerous females Mallards and doing some displaying, trying to show off but none of the females seemed to be impressed or interested. After a few minutes, the Hooded Merganser just took off and flew to the north up the river out of sight. It was a cold breezy morning with temps hanging around 32 degrees, with no sun. Images were taken on March 22, 2020.

Hooded Merganser, male, is this Hollyhood?

On shore for a moment…

The back view…

Displaying…

Sees a female Mallard, in a hurry…

 

Trumpeter Swans at Frame Park in Waukesha Wisconsin on March 4, 2020

At ​Frame Park today in Waukesha along the Fox River a couple of Trumpeter Swans had come in since my morning visit. ​Sometimes it pays to check places out twice in one day! ​Always nice to see something different as everyone is anxious for the start of spring migration. These 2 – 1st summer birds floated down the middle of the river when I arrived. After some distance they stopped and did some feeding. Canada Geese joined them in the area as food must have been plentiful. They did not do much other than a little preening and the feeding. A bright sunny day finally with not much wind and temps around 40 degrees. Images were taken on March 4, 2020.

Trumpeter Swans the pair…

Just up from something to eat…

Some preening…

Both underwater getting something to eat, aquatic plants…

Looking pretty…

Just a nice look…

The close-up…

More preening…

I would call this a short scoot…

Just up from eating some aquatic plants…

Another view…

Trumpeter Swans the pair…

Redhead Ducks at the Fox River in Waukesha Wisconsin on February 10, 2020

I made a stop at the Fox River early morning in Waukesha to see if anything was going on. 9 Redheads, 5 males and 4 females were present, all resting near the dam. That area was the only part of the river that was not froze over with temps starting out at 10 degrees in the morning. A couple of quick dives and one stretch was the only excitement I saw while I was there for a few minutes. With the main river froze over, I’m sure the ducks were conserving energy by not being active. The river was probably open by noon with the warm sun shinning. Stunning ducks in their breeding plumage. The full sun made for a nice morning out! Images were taken on February 10, 2019.

Redhead, male

Both male and female just finishing up a drink…

A resting male…

Redhead, female

A close up…

Stretching…

More stretching…

A pair…

Incoming…

Some of the gang…

Redhead Duck, juvenile drake at the Fox River in Waukesha Wisconsin on February 2, 2020

Ducks along the Fox River in Waukesha this morning had the common suspects, a 100 plus Mallards other than one duck that stood out, a Redhead, and juvenile drake. Not a stunning duck but still beautiful in it’s own way. It was nice to see something different. Also, a couple of 100 Canada Geese made for some noise along the river. It was a beautiful morning for the time I was out with sunny skies, low winds and temps at 45 plus degrees. Images were taken on February 2, 2020.

Redhead, juvenile drake…

Perched on a rock resting…

Up and looking around….

A turn to the right…a nice look at this duck…

Just cruising along looking pretty…

 

Head up!

Just moving around on the river in between the Mallards…

Hooded Merganser on the Fox River in Waukesha County on January 24, 2020

One of my birding stops today provided nice views of a male Hooded Merganser. It was hanging out with some Mallards along the Fox River in Waukesha. A few times it dove for something to eat and came up with a crayfish. The weather was misty with a few flurries mixed in, mild temps around 35 degrees with no wind. Images were taken on January 24, 2020.

Mr. Good Looking!

Cruising around off the ice…

Duck talk!

Up from a dive has a crayfish…

Tosses it around the get the right end to go down first…

Looking at me I guess…

A nice pose…

White-winged Scoter at the Petroleum Pier on Milwaukee’s Lakefront on December 28, 2019

Birding along the lakefront in Milwaukee this morning one of the highlights was a female White-winged Scoter neat the Petroleum Pier. It dove while I was there coming up with mussels to eat. A drab duck but always nice to see something different this time of year. Another species to note there were two Great Black-backed Gulls on ice in the Kinnickinnic River at Jones Island. A gloomy day with some light drizzle, mild temps of 40 degrees, and a light breeze while birding the lakefront this morning. Images were taken on December 28, 2019.

The female White-winged Scoter…

Just after a dive eating a mussel…a little white seen on a wing here…

Eating more mussels…

Trying to break apart the mussels here as numerous ones are stuck together…

White-winged Scoter with a blurry Greater Scaup female behind…

A distant shot of one of the two Great Black-backed Gulls present this morning…

Ruddy Duck on the Fox River in Waukesha Wisconsin on November 22, 2019

An early stop at the Fox River in Waukesha provided nice views of a female Ruddy Duck. It has been hanging around for a couple of days just sleeping in the middle of the river. This morning it was moving around with some Mallards. Sorta drab duck, the males in spring are stunning with black and white on the head with a blue bill! It was a pleasant morning with mild temps, partly cloudy skies and low winds. Images were taken on November 22, 2019.

Ruddy Duck, female

Ruddy Duck, female

Ruddy Duck, female

Ruddy Duck, female, another shot…

Hooded Merganser in Waukesha County Wisconsin on November 20, 2019

One of my birding stops today in Waukesha County along a river. It had a stunning male Hooded Merganser that was hanging out with Mallards. The Hooded Merganser gave nice views, I witnessed very little feeding, only once I saw part of a crayfish in its bill when it came up after diving. It was a beautiful day out, almost spring like, with full sun and little wind, temps about 47 degrees. Images were taken on November 20, 2019.

Hooded Merganser, male with his mouth open…

What a beautiful duck, hood up!

Resting…

Swallowing water from a drink…

Snow Goose at Greenfield Park in Milwaukee Wisconsin on September 30, 2019

Once again a Snow Goose has stopped for a visit at Greenfield Park. I found this adult hanging out with Canada Geese, typically of what one will do when visiting. The Snow Goose was not in the lagoon but on shore. Minimum action from this species in shots but still cool to see one here at the park. Last year a Snow Goose stopped for a long visit at the park on October 22, 2018. So this one is a little early when comparing those two. Starting out the day with fog then changing to sunshine with plenty of humidity, low winds. Images were taken on September 30, 2019.

A little stretch…

Hanging out with friends, the Canada Geese…

Just a little drama…

Eating together, that great grass!

Feeding…

Looking for a good patch of grass…

Friends…

Posing nicely…

The cross-over…

The Snow Goose, adult with some grass on the bill…

Northern Shoveler at the Fox River in Waukesha Wisconsin on April 25, 2019

One of my last birding stops today was the Fox River in Waukesha. I check it almost daily in case something new has showed up. Today a Northern Shoveler was the treat giving nice views. It hung around with a couple of Mallards and fed once in awhile along the shoreline of the river. What a beautiful duck! It was a gorgeous day with mostly sunny skies, little wind and a pleasant temperature. Images were taken on April 25, 2019.

Northern Shoveler, male

Northern Shoveler, the reflection…

Close-up, those colors…

Feeding…

Giving great looks!

Say….Ahh….

Feeding along the shoreline…

Some action…

So pretty!

Wood Ducks and Green-winged Teal in Cook County Illinois March 26, 2019

Wood Ducks and Green-winged Teal were the highlights on a trip down to Cook County Illinois. I was invited to go with Caron G and Sylvia P and with a great subject as the Wood Duck, I did not turn it down. It turned out it was a nice opportunity for photos of these beautiful ducks. The ducks were calm at this location for the most part, swimming around, hanging out and just being ducks. It was a gorgeous spring day, still winter coat weather, but the full sun eventuality warmed things up. Winds were calm with temps around 40 degrees. Images were taken on March 26, 2019

Wood Duck, male

Wood Duck, male coming in…

Wood Duck, female

Wood Duck, male on the log looking proud…

Green-winged Teal, male

Wood Duck, male, head up…

Green-winged Teal, male

Wood Ducks, the couple…

Wood Duck, female

Wood Duck, male

Wood Duck, female coming in…

Green-winged Teal, male

Wood Duck, male

Wood Duck, female

Wood Duck, male, just hanging out…

Beautiful!

Wood Duck, female

Wood Duck, male

Red-breasted Mergansers at Lakeshore State Park in Milwaukee Wisconsin on March 24, 2019

One of my birding stops this morning along the lakefront was Lakeshore State Park in Milwaukee. Very few winter ducks remain in the lagoon there. The majority of the few that were there were Red-breasted Mergansers. A group of 8, 3 males and 5 females were diving and finding food in the area by the foot bridge. Other birds at Lakeshore State Park were Red-winged Blackbirds, Common Grackles, and Song Sparrows. The rest of the lakefront in Milwaukee was quiet with only a few scattered Red-breasted Mergansers, Bufflehead, Greater Scaup and Common Goldeneye. A stop at Lake Park, it was almost bird-less, but did have a flock way up high of about 50 Tundra Swans heading northwest. It was a beautiful morning with only a light breeze, light sun, temps in the 40’s. Images were taken on March 24, 2019.

Red-breasted Merganser, male

Red-breasted Merganser, female

Red-breasted Merganser, female front, Red-breasted Merganser, male back…

Red-breasted Merganser, male

The dive for something to eat…

Tail end of the dive…

Red-breasted Merganser, female

Red-breasted Merganser, female closeup…

Red-breasted Merganser, male closeup…

Red-breasted Merganser, female…

Red-breasted Merganser, male

Red-breasted Merganser, female

Common Goldeneye, Greater Scaup and Red-breasted Merganser at Lakeshore State Park in Milwaukee Wisconsin on March 18, 2019

Another stop today at Lakeshore State Park in Milwaukee provided some nice views once again of the Greater Scaup, Common Goldeneye and a Red-breasted Merganser. One never knows what will show up so I make the stop there often. I was not there long but did capture a few different poses, etc. that I did not get yesterday.  It was a chilly day with a stiff wind from the west. Even with full sun, it was cold! Temps around 30 to start the day warmed a little as the day went on. Images were taken on March 18, 2019.

Common Goldeneye, male stretching…

Common Goldeneye, male out of water…I think this fella was tired…

Common Goldeneye, male out of water…

Common Goldeneye, the female…

Common Goldeneye, female, so cute…

Greater Scaup eating a mussel, that is what they eat there in the lagoon…

Greater Scaup, female

Red-breasted Merganser, male…

Greater Scaup, female…

Greater Scaup, male

Common Goldeneye, male wings up…

Common Goldeneye, male cruising along the ice edge…

Red-breasted Merganser, female – Fox River Waukesha 3/19/19

Red-breasted Merganser with a Bullhead, female – Fox River Waukesha 3/19/19

Common Goldeneye and Greater Scaup at Lakeshore State Park in Milwaukee Wisconsin on March 17, 2019

One of my stops this afternoon along the lakefront in Milwaukee was Lakeshore State Park. A few open places free from ice in the lagoon provided places for ducks to be diving and feeding on mussels. Those species were Common Goldeneye and Greater Scaup. There were very many walkers enjoying the sunny day which kept the birds tight in the openings. The birds were moving around a little and a couple of flight shots were taken. It was a nice sunny day, but winds kept things on the cold side. Images were taken on March 17, 2019.

Common Goldeneye, male

Common Goldeneye, male

Greater Scaup, male

Greater Scaup, female

Greater Scaup, female

Common Goldeneye, male

Common Goldeneye, male

Common Goldeneye, male

Greater Scaup, female

A pair of Common Goldeneye, males taking off…

Common Goldeneye, male at the ice edge