Redhead and redbreast invasion!

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The redheads had invaded the duck pond just outside of Fort De Soto as they do every winter. The pond was full of them as well as a few ring neck ducks.

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Showing off.

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This winter there seems to be more northern shovelers than in the past.

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Up on his toes.

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Look at that bill! They were all busy bathing and flapping on the dark dreary morning I was there in early January.

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Another female shoveler showing off.

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Some were trying to sleep. I should have slept in as well since it started to sprinkle.

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Out at the beach, I saw a few red breasted mergansers in the lagoon.

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Only females though. I think that first one has a shrimp.

The first four days of the New Year were dark and dreary. I had relatives visiting and it rained on them the entire time. They left on the weekend and I headed down to Fort De Soto just to get out, rain or no rain. It started with dark clouds and luckily didn’t start drizzling until I was leaving. I stopped at the duck pond outside the park since it was full of redheads. I’m still looking for that wigeon to add to my list. The pond was full of the usuals including coots, mallards, lesser scaup and the above.

Camera Critters

Red breasted mergansers with orange beaks and feet

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Above is a short video of the merganser scratching.

I spent a dark drizzly morning in February at Honeymoon Island. I walked up to the north end of the trail, out to the beach and saw a small flock of red breasted mergansers floating by.┬áThese were all females although some of them could have been immature males that don’t have their dark colors in yet. They seemed pretty relaxed and all of them were busy preening and scratching. These ducks only visit for the winter and are probably home up north by now.

LorikArt