Saturday, April 18, 2015

Saturday Scenes

Peaceful coexistence

The Snowy Egrets and Green-winged Teal (GWT) get along well together. I'm not sure why there are still so many GWT here unless they intend to nest in this area. All the duck species except for Mallards, Blue-winged Teal, and GWT have left for parts north.

The Green-winged Teal male is easy enough to recognize with his mahogany-colored head and the green patch near the crown. The female, like most female waterfowl, is dressed in more cryptic, camouflage colors which make her difficult to spot. The neon green wing patch, which is not always visible, proclaims her membership in the GWT family.

The Blue-winged Teal have also continued to stay in the marsh, although not in the numbers the GWT  have. The male of this species is also easily recognizable with the crescent-shaped white patch in front of his eye. You almost have to see the female's sky-blue wing patch to identify her properly. Again, the patch is not always visible

I'm not sure what goes on with the male members of the Blue-winged Teal. They travel in pairs and seem to get along, then all of a sudden, the males will start pumping their heads up and down, which translated, works out approximately to, "You want a piece of this?" Then it's on. This "fight" didn't last long, but the one aggressor got in a pretty good pinch.

Usually, the first indication I have of an eagle entering the air space over the marsh is the sudden flight of most of the birds. Some birds will use the tactic of freezing in place, but most take to the air like these Green-winged Teal. I just happened to press the shutter as they were passing the Osprey nest platform. The female Osprey is there, but cannot be seen sitting on the eggs. The male has his eye on the Eagle and is considering escorting the bird out of the area, which he did a moment later.

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