The last few days I have hit the lakefront in Milwaukee with hopes to see the Harlequin Duck that was reported a few days ago. Today and getting into the afternoon finishing up a lap at Lakeshore State Park I spotted the 1st year male Harlequin Duck east of the island out a ways. It was with about 6 Common Goldeneyes. In a few seconds the group of ducks flushed for some reason and they flew north out of sight. I walked to the point at the Sailing Center and came up empty. On the walk back to the Summerfest grounds I relocated the duck out from Discovery World. It was again with a small group of Common Goldeneyes and once again they all flew for some reason but this time to the south. The lake was very calm and I wonder if any movement on shore made them more skittish? I was lucky to get a few shots off before it left. I looked south at all the ducks to the lighthouse and no Harlequin, from there it was ice to the south for awhile. Thanks to Jym M for finding this duck near the Sailing Center a few days ago and getting the word out. A cloudy day with mild temps, a breeze from the northwest made for not a bad day out birding. Images were taken on January 24, 2017.
Binomial name: Histrionicus histrionicus
Category: Ducks, Geese, and Swans
Size: 16.5” long, 26” wing span
Weight: 1.3 lb
Normal Range: Normal range for this species is about Yellowstone Park WY, west of there to the coast, north of Yellowstone far up into Canada and then west to the Pacific coast. Some of their range is also the eastern Canadian coast of the Atlantic Ocean.