Snow is coming...Need to hurry outside and see Gadwall!

It snowed a little bit this evening, so I guess the weather forecast wasn't too far off. When it was warmer in the afternoon, I headed outside to make the most out of my days.

Sky-watch photo of the day

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)
This Great Blue Heron is probably very used to me photographing it now. I see it almost everytime at the same spot in the ditch. What a lonely looking back. I wish I can give it a pat, and call it my friend.

Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)
Came across this second heron a few meters away. It was on the trail along people's backyard. Not wanting to scare it off, I decided to give it space and biked around it and through the residential area.

Unknown cute-looking sparrow waiting for the feeder to be filled.

Snow Goose (Chen caerulenscens)
Snow Goose (Chen caerulenscens) is still here. Although this one is missing its friend that I usually see it eating with.

In Terra Nova, it is very hard to pay attention to the ducks that are in the ditches because most of them are Mallards or Wigeons, and it can get kind of boring after a while. However, today paid off when I spotted this not green-headed (i.e. Mallard) or white-foreheaded (i.e. Wigeon) duck. I stopped in my track and wondered what it is. It was feeding beside a female Mallard, so I thought it might be a hybrid.

Gadwall (Anas strepera)
Male Gadwall (Anas strepera)

After asking for help at WhatBird forum, I got the answer that it was a pair of Gadwall (and not a female Mallard in the photo). First sighting of Gadwalls for me, and I'll always remember it now. Awesome!

What stood out about the male Gadwall was the impressive-looking pattern of intricate markings all of its body feathers. Quite beautiful. The female, on the other hand, has plumage similar to that of a female Mallard, but it has white belly, a steeper forehead, and orange sides on its upper gray mandible.

When I came to the dyke, I saw the pair of adult Bald Eagles again. One was inside the nest, while the other was just outside it. But later when I came back, the pair had switched positions. Shortly afterwards, the one inside the nest flew out and started to rub its beak against a branch. Perhaps egg-laying is not happening yet, but it sure is exciting thinking that new life might begin soon in the Spring.

Beak rubbing

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