Sunday, December 11, 2011

Hooded Mergansers

I knew with our pond being so tiny this winter (thank you, record-setting heat/drought of Summer 2011) that chances of us getting any migratory fowl would be slim.  Even our little pied-bill grebe(s) did not come back to winter with us this year.  To save me from waterfowl withdrawal, a pair of hooded mergansers began appearing daily to fish in the circular remnants of our once large, curving, expansive pond. {sniff}

Capturing them on camera has proved rather dicey.  They're extremely shy; quick to hide behind the overgrowth of weeds along the expanding shore or to fly off if they sense human presence.  So I was forced to shoot from my favorite blind - from the window of my office.  Even that was tough as the area of pond is so small this year that shooting past the birdfeeder tree and shore weeds into 'open water' is challenging.  So forgive these images for all sorts of reasons.  But because they are new visitors to Run*A*Round, I wanted to share them with you. 

Some rather nice reflections, at least!

Mud banks, galore.


Approaching a Great Blue Heron
 
GBH not concerned.


Love the hen's 'do - reminiscent of Cher, perhaps

image from Web

 


I do hope they'll stick around.  They are still catching fish here, which I'm happy to see.  I'll try to catch them on a brighter day next time.

100 comments:

Pix at Under the Oaks said...

Tex you are one lucky gal! I would love to have a Hooded Merganser couple to enjoy. But I think they think MissouREE is a bit cold maybe?! Lucky you and lucky us cause you share :)

Gone Country said...

What lovely visitors! I hope they'll stick around awhile.. I'd love to see more photos of them!

Tammy said...

How lucky you are! I have seen them on the lake here, but they stay just out of reach of my camera.
I forgot to mention on my last visit how much I love the new header.

thesedaysofmine.com said...

I'm always amazed at your knowledge of birds! These are so pretty; glad you were able to get pictures from your "blind"!

BlueShell said...

Yesss..they are cute...and i hope they stay around...your ROUND ranch!

have a nice Sunday!

Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

The thought crossed my mind just as I was coming up with a smart aleck comment regarding the Cher comparison, what if you built a small blind near the pond to photograph from? I've seen articles where photographers use hunter's duck blinds just for that purpose. I think they even are available to purchase in a tent form like from Cabellas or the like but you being so handy, making your own might be fun. Just a crazy thought.

Jill said...

They are so pretty. Love the comparison to Cher. I hope they stick around too..I'd love to see more.

dr momi said...

Too funny sneaking that Cher shot in there!!

Tanna at The Brick Street Bungalow said...

Beautiful new little visitors!! So glad you spotted them. LOVE your new header!!! blessings ~ tanna

Melodie said...

I hope they stay for you! You are lucky to still have so much water in your pond! Ours is more like a puddle even with the recent rain.

Jan n Jer said...

What a thrill to see your new visitors! They are a pretty pair...hope they stick around for a while!!!

eileeninmd said...

Beautiful ducks and nice visitors to your pond. I hope they stick around.

Roean said...

Sometimes I think they have the life! And sometimes I sure wish I did. :)

Sandra said...

I am happy to know you still have fish after the nasty dry summer you had. that hooded Merganser is a first for me, i love the HOOD.. cool bird.

Woody said...

I'm thinking the hen has been spending a bit too much time with the fashion magazines!

It's good to see the pond coming back, I could watch GBH's all day. The mergansers are quite the handsome couple.

Betty Manousos@ Cut and Dry said...

your photos are really gorgeous!
great reflections, too.

glad to see those beautiful visitors to your pond...hope they stick around.

Becky and Gary said...

Amazing shots! We have Hoodies on the creek most of the time, and I have taken tons of pictures of them and know how skittish they are. With the recent addition of neighbors and their 5 dogs, the wildlife on our area of the creek has all but disappeared :~( I haven't seen any of my favorite Wood ducks or GBH's either. Oh well, there is still hope for next spring.
Have a grand rest of the weekend.
B

Crissi said...

So very nice photos!
Have a good week!
Ciao Crissi

holdingmoments said...

These are such beautiful ducks Theresa. I've only ever seen them in collections here. It must be great to have such lovely visitors to your own pond.

CameraCruise said...

Lucky you!
Beautiful visitors you have.
Thanks for sharing.
Love to see more photos of them.
Have a great day.

latebloomerbuds said...

Thank goodness the Mergansers showed up since the Grebes did not! What? Glad you know the names of all these species. Otherwise, I'd think duck duck goose! Margie

Farmchick said...

Beautiful birds! They do look a bit like Cher!

parker said...

Happy you at least are having some migratory species stopping by. Gives one hope for next year!

Lynne said...

Your Hooded Merganser visitors brought a quiet, graceful time as I visited today . . .
Lovely . . .

Arija said...

Is that Cher on a good or a bad hair day? Either your pond is smaller than mine or your lens is bigger but you did manage to get those web-foots clearer than i can manage and either there is some magic about you or your heron is nowhere near as people shy as ours.

Love that spunky shot of you in your header, wich I were that young again . . . sigh . . .

Magia da Inês said...

♥✿⊱╮
º°♥❤ Olá, amiga!

❤ Gostei dos patos e dos reflexos na lagoa.

Boa semana!
Beijinhos.
Brasil ♥✿⊱╮
º°♥❤ ❤

ellen abbott said...

I'm so jealous that you have a great blue hanging about.

Michaele said...

I like the series. Watching the pair of them swim around is peaceful. I just think it is cool that they are a pair.

bailey-road.com said...

What wonderful visitors you have at the ranch!

Inger said...

The birds are lovely. I am getting worried about all this dry weather here too. We're supposed to get rain tomorrow, snow on Tuesday, then sun, sun, sun. I'm so bored with sun and dry weather. Hope you will get some rain soon to fill up your lovely pond.

Kjell T. Evensen said...

Beautiful series. However, image #7 must be the ugly duckling? Right? :)

Sylvia K said...

Lovely birds and beautiful watery captures -- even if the pond is a bit low! Hope you have a great day!

Sylvia

Nancy @ A Rural Journal said...

Only you could compare ducks to Cher. You are the master Google-r. ;)

Awesome pics -- I hope they stick around too! :)

Lorilee said...

Wow. I always get SO excited to spot a new bird in my yard! I have a rufous hummer still hanging around.
Blessings,
Lorilee

Lois Evensen said...

Beautiful images. That one with the black plumage is really scary, though!

Pam said...

You must have been thrilled upon spotting them.. great shots from your window.
I hope they stick around for a while and take advantage of your Texas hospitality.
Hugs, Pam :)

Barb said...

Lucky you to have these visitors! I'm always sad when you talk about your pond since I live on a lake and I know how it feels. Things do go in cycles . . .

Bob Bushell said...

A lovely type of Mergansers you have found, let there will be a better light, but you did it anyway.

A Quiet Corner said...

They are beautiful...you are so lucky to have any size pond!!!...:)JP

Κωστής Τζαγκαράκης said...

Beautiful species and great shots again.
Costas

Cher' Shots said...

LOL ~ tossing Cher in the mix, how funny!
'love & hugs from afar'

gowestferalwoman said...

Oh they are gorgeous! What a surprise!


And LOL even Cher wants to be a merganser in TexWIgirls pond~

"Hey, you! This is the last time Im going to tell you - get out of my bleeping pond and put some bleeping clothes on...before I call the police!! Go HOME!!!"

Julie G. said...

I was so delighted to see Hooded Mergansers featured on this post. Such beautiful birds! How lucky you are to have a pair visiting your pond. I can never seem to get a good photograph of these beauties, like you stated, they are so very shy. I will keep trying. It's nice to see them on your wonderful blog. The Cher comparison brought about a few chuckles.

Randy said...

Love the Cher reference. Cute ducks.

Deb said...

such a cute couple...that heron looks fiesty...

Andrew said...

Beautiful little birds to see...
Fingers crossed to get the rain you need to refill the pond.
I have had bucket loads today..

Manzanita said...

As newcomers, I'm positive they are enjoying their visit just as I am enjoying your new header. Maybe it's not brand new because I haven't been on line much of late. The pictures of "you" are really lovely. It's such joy to see your ranch and the animals and read about what gives you pizazz.
Thanks

Giga said...

Życzę Ci, aby kaczki zostały w Twoim stawie. Pozdrawiam

Fjällripan said...

How great with new visitors! They are beautiful :)

Breathtaking said...

What a nice surprise for you,they
are such cute visiters.

Gillian Olson said...

Great pictures, both the mergansers and the heron are great, lovely reflections too.

Robin said...

T, lucky you! I've seen a couple of females lately but no males! I think they are so pretty! Mum with her wacky do and Dad with his colourful coiffe

laurak@forestwalkart said...

they're beautiful!! i don't think i've ever seen them in person! the face markings remind me of your giveaway duck art! but i guess it's not...because you art is much more colorful!

anyway...so cool to see this through your office window!! :)

wildlifewatcher said...

Hi Texwisgirl, Having seen these lovely ducks in person last year at my lake home, I can tell you that your pictures are quite good. I just love seeing the drake in all his finery. Good shot of the Heron, too. Have an excellent evening tonight and a most pleasant and enjoyable coming week.

Sanders said...

Such beautiful birds...thanks for sharing!

Ellie said...

You get such a great selection of birds visiting you - it's great for us as well as you take lovely pictures of them. Thanks for sharing :))

Carole Meisenhelter said...

doesn't matter to the waterbirds how big the pond; they've still come to enjoy. Lovely photos even though you found them challenging; glad you shared them with us too

Texan said...

They are pretty!

We too have a long long way to go to see our pond full again. I am really hoping by spring it will be full! Crossing fingers!

SweetMarie said...

They are such cute birds. The reflections in the water are so full of color, so pretty!

Marissa @Life On Our Side Of The Mountain said...

I love her Cher-do and his big red eyes! I do hope they'll stick around, I would love seeing more photos of them.

Gary said...

They're beautiful aren't they? The female everybit as handsome as the male. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Montanagirl said...

You did just fine with these photos. Always fun to see something new!

mick said...

Great to have some bird visitors in the remnants of your pond. Someday!! it will rain some more! We had no rain for a month and a half and now have had 5 inches in 2 weeks. With the summer heat it's a bit like living in a sauna.

Joe said...

I think we had one of the male Mergansers on the Cabin pond last year. We never was sure what it was but it sure looks like the duck in your pics.

wayside wanderer said...

Oh, how sweet. So glad you have such a fun visitation. It lifts the heart so! I hope they stay a while.

barbara l. hale said...

I'm sorry to hear of your dearth of water fowl, but a hooded merganser is a good one to have around. I've seen one once around here floating on the beaver pond near our house. Beautiful and flashy little duck, indeed. I enjoyed seeing your pics!

Rita said...

They are a striking pair. Your Cher reference cracked me up! Love the blue heron, too. What a lovely place you have! :)

Madge @ The View From Right Here said...

The ones that came are enjoying their stay...

Linda R. said...

I do love how you comparison to Cher.. Too funny!! Great photos..

Hugs, Linda

Ann said...

Only 2 ducks, you make a box for them to nest?

Rohrerbot said...

That is quite the sight!:) And speaking of sites, I've been seeing your face on a lot of comments, so I thought I'd drop by:) Glad I did.

Porch Days said...

Those ducks are beautiful. I had a chance to photograph one and the shot was not clear. I was so disappointed but the shot was from a distance. Nancy

Susan said...

I'm amazed, I wouldn't know one duck from another. Great shots!

Chatty Crone said...

Am i crazy or do I see Cher in with the Hooded Merganser? sandie

Sall's Country Life said...

Oh lucky you! Those mergansers could hang out at my farm anytime, except now, 'cause most of our ponds are frozen! They are gorgeous and thanks for sharing. Hope they stay so we can see some more!

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

I am pretty sure I've told you that I think of you each time we get rain, and we have gotten clobbered with more rain this past week. I'm sorry that you don't have enough to attract a crowd, but you're off to a good start with what is showing up--What an interesting pair they are! I'll look forward to seeing more of them!

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I will take hooded merganser pictures any day, sunny or shady or whatever...these are still on my "wish list."

Paula said...

They are prettier then Cher.

edenhills said...

Such a shame your pond is still so low. Hopefully you'll keep getting some rain.

Ms. Becky said...

I love the reflections of the new visitors in the water, and that great blue of course. the drought has gone on long enough now. get out there and do your nude rain dance TWG. or have your already tried that? happy week to you.

Gail Dixon (Louisiana Belle) said...

Shooting wildlife is a huge challenge. I think you did great! I'm always happy to just get anything at all, especially if it's a new variety of bird. I didn't know hooded moegansers passed through Texas. Awesome. :)

Gail Dixon (Louisiana Belle) said...

Shooting wildlife is a huge challenge. I think you did great! I'm always happy to just get anything at all, especially if it's a new variety of bird. I didn't know hooded moegansers passed through Texas. Awesome. :)

Daniel said...

Great captures! It would be a bonus to have them call your pond... home.

Cheryl @ The Farmer's Daughter said...

I hope your new visitors will stay a while! They are a good-looking pair.

rainfield61 said...

You have a variety of birds in your neighborhood.

You are so lucky.

SquirrelQueen said...

You might not have a big variety of water visitors but you got some nice ones. The Hooded Mergansers are always fun to watch. They are camera shy aren't they. Our aviary has a pair and trying to get shots of them is a challenge.

Posie Patchwork said...

Giggles at the Cher comparison, love Posie

Stewart M said...

Hi there - what great visitors! Glad the fish survived to be eaten!

Will have look at the size of the images.

Stewart M

Angela Häring-Christen said...

Lovely pictures!
I wish you a nice day!
Greetings, Angela

Kerri said...

FANTASTIC! I've only seen these ducks once in the wild and it was thrilling!!

Rain said...

Cher comparison is priceless! You have such a knowledge of these friends that stop by your inviting home! In our area we have so few birds this winter-everyone is going through major withdrawal. Experts say they will come later-but weather situation is making it crazy for them as well as us! Hope so miss them.......

Furry Bottoms said...

The Cher comparison was perfect!

pattisjarrett said...

What a treat, I've never seen hooded mergansers, either! Love the front feathering on the unconcerned GBH. Great shot! Glad to see you have some visitors. I know how barren our backyard seems when the birds don't rely on us for food.

Pat Tillett said...

That was great! I especially like the hen's comparison to Cher!

magda said...

So beautiful photos!!!
I like the reflections!!!
And your humor!!!
Best regards

Roan said...

Wow! Lucky you! They are beauties, as is the heron. Love the Cher comparison. I think you might be right. lol

heyBJK said...

Love the mergansers and their hoods! I think Cher copied them. LOL! Nice to see you have some ducks visiting and that there are still fish in the pond.

Paula said...

WOW! Look at those gorgeous colors... Cher ain't got nuthin' on her! ;)

Rose said...

I think these are great shots to be shot from behind a window at a distance...

Samantha said...

WOW! Hoodeds! That's fantastic, T!!!

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