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March 31, 2017 – Canvasback in Maine

Canvasback in MaineCanvasback with Grass

Ingrid and I were heading south to watch our beloved and first place Boston Celtics take on the Orlando Magic and we made a detour to Biddeford Pool to see if we could see the Canvasback that was being reported  at Etherington Pond.

I find a certain sense of excitement when I travel to a new location to see a rare or new bird and upon arriving when the “hunt” begins.

As soon a I parked the car, I pulled my binoculars to my eyes . . . and there is was . . . the Canvasback!!!!   Frankly that was a little too easy.  I want to work a little.

The Canvasback is North America’s largest Diving Duck (the Common Eider is our largest Duck).   The Canvasback eats tubers, seeds and snails.  The one I was watching dived over and over, several times coming up with what appeared to be a mouthful of grass.

Depending on the season, the Canvasback is very common in southern states (winter) and central states and Canada (summer) but is a surprise sighting in Northern New England  . . . a lifer for me.

Also got our first Greater Scaup of the year . . . or at least what more knowledgable birders tell me is a Greater Scaup . . . it is very difficult for my aging eyes to tell the difference between the Lesser and Greater Scaups.