White-winged Scoters at Tommy Thompson Park: Dec. 2021

The last time that I was at Tommy Thompson Park I got some photos of a Peregrine Falcon:

Peregrine Falcon
Peregrine Falcon

This morning I was hoping that I might find it again but did not. Instead I found many duck species including one that we only see in the coldest months – the White-winged Scoter.

White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoters (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)

White-winged Scoters are large, dark ducks with distinctive wedge-shaped bills.

White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)

These are uncommon ducks which nest in northwestern North America and spend the winter on either the Atlantic or Pacific coast with some wintering in the Great Lakes.

White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)

White-winged Scoters eat mollusks, crustaceans, fish, and insects; plant matter makes up a very small part of their diet.

White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)
White-winged Scoter (juvenile)

Some other birds:

Long-tailed Ducks (female)
Long-tailed Ducks
Mallard (female)
Long-tailed Duck (female)
Trumpeter Swans
Long-tailed Duck (female)
Long-tailed Duck (female)
Long-tailed Ducks (female)

Park scenes:

Cormorant or Night-heron nests

NATURE POETRY

To the cold December heaven
Came the pale Moon and the stars,
As the yellow Sun was sinking
Behind the purple bars.                       – Charles Dawson Shanly (1811–75)

Miles Hearn

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