Sunday, February 20, 2011

Lee Dam Pochard

I took a few photos of the drake Pochard at Lee Dam as it was a new species there. Here's one of them. David T suggested it may be a hybrid as I'd stated in my previous post that its plumage wasn't as I'd expect at this time of year - what do people think?


David Tattersley said...

It looks like a female Pochard to me Jeff, the plumage on the head and mantle is that of a female in breeding plumage (ie tends to be browner rather than grey as seen in winter)

The plumage on the body however seems greyer and lacking in any vermiculations than you might expect on a female, but perhaps the poor light and reflection from the water has contributed to this look?

martynbirder said...

I'd go for this bird being a female, although it is a bit odd

Jeff Cox said...

When I first saw it I also thought it was a female due to lack of colour on the head, but through the bins the body was definitely grey and the nape was the chestnut colour you expect in a male, but this colour didn't extend over the whole head and the stern was grey not black which is why I thought it was an eclipse plumage male. If you ignore the chestnut colour on the nape then yes I agree, it's a female. Looking again the eye also has an eyering which also supports it being a female rather than male.

Thanks for the help.

martynbirder said...

Jeff, I have a very interesting article on Aythya hybrids, leave your email and I'll scan it for you, it's a very tricky subject and one I don't understand very well


Jeff Cox said...

Thanks Martyn -