A walk from the Lift Bridge to Spencer Smith + Tundra Swans

The marvel of flight…

Long-tailed Duck in flight

Long-tailed Duck in flight

Long-tailed Ducks in flight

Long-tailed Ducks in flight

White-winged Scoters in flight

White-winged Scoters in flight

Red-breasted Merganser (male) in flight

Red-breasted Merganser (male) in flight

Banking left

Banking left

Here are two photographs of a Long-tailed Duck.  The first taken on the open water and the other close to the Lift Bridge.  Some photographers prefer the orange reflection on the water.

Long-tailed Duck (male)

Long-tailed Duck (male)

Long-tailed Duck

Long-tailed Duck

Looking down from the Lift Bridge…

View of Long-tailed Duck from Lift Bridge

View of Long-tailed Duck from Lift Bridge

Long-tailed Duck diving

Long-tailed Duck diving

Diving Long-tailed Duck

Diving Long-tailed Duck

On the opposite side of the bridge I was greeted by a Northern Mockingbird.

Northern Mockingbird

Northern Mockingbird

Nearby a male White-winged Scoter was foraging near the rocks.

White-winged Scoter

White-winged Scoter

It was a perfect day to walk along the beach.

Stretch of beach

Stretch of beach

Scanning the water  this group of Great Black-backed Gulls caught my attention.

Great Black-backed Gulls

Great Black-backed Gulls

Suddenly, a female White-winged scoter appeared. I must confess. I’ve been curious about the manner in which these gulls catch their prey. I watched as they mobbed but did not strike the scoter.

White-winged Scoter harrassed by Great Black-backed Gulls

White-winged Scoter harrassed by Great Black-backed Gulls

More harrassment

More harrassment

I keep thinking, “Dive, buddy, dive!” She decided to fight and lived to see another day.

This scoter's got spunk

This scoter’s got spunk

Another group of Great Black-backed Gulls  further up the beach were consuming the carcass of a bird.

Great Black-backed Gulls feasting on waterfowl

Great Black-backed Gulls feasting on waterfowl

Great Black-backed Gulls (adult and juveniles)

Great Black-backed Gulls (adult and juveniles)

Great Black-backed Gull

Great Black-backed Gull

Juvenile Great Black-backed Gull

Juvenile Great Black-backed Gull

At Spencer Smith, Surf Scoters were foraging near the promenade.

Surf Scoter (male)

Surf Scoter (male)

Surf Scoter (female)

Surf Scoter (female)

One White-winged Scoter and two juvenile Surf Scoters

One White-winged Scoter and two juvenile Surf Scoters

I revisited Spencer Smith during the week to find American Coots, Gadwall and this American Wigeon foraging below the pier.

American Wigeon

American Wigeon

Additionally, this female Long-tailed Duck was resting on the rocks.

Long-tailed Duck on the rocks

Long-tailed Duck on the rocks

Returning a few days later, the coots were gone but a nice group of Ruddy Ducks bobbed on the water. The group included this male in breeding plumage.

Ruddy Duck (breeding plumage)

Ruddy Duck (breeding plumage)

Ruddy Ducks (breeding and transitioning plumage)

Ruddy Ducks (breeding and transitioning plumage)

White-winged Scoters also gave great views.

White-winged Scoters

White-winged Scoters

I rechecked the lake on Sunday. The scoters were in the distance. I decided to train my lens on the Chilly Half Marathon after reading the first sign!

Encouragement at Chilly Half Marathon

Encouragement at Chilly Half Marathon

At the Chilly Half Marathon

At the Chilly Half Marathon

Tundra Swans have been passing through Spencer Smith Park.  There was a large flock on Monday and this afternoon there were over 100 bobbing on the water at the west end, with more arriving from the east.  What a thrill to catch these birds in flight this evening.

Tundra Swans

Tundra Swans

 

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