Hooded Mergansers at Stanley Park

DSC_0468Male in courting display — ISO 1250 | 300mm | f/5.6 | 1/500, not cropped

Hooded Merganser (male and female) | Harle couronné | Lophodytes cucullatus : As I pointed out a few days ago, I participated in the November bird count at Vancouver’s Stanley Park, which is organized under the auspices of the Stanley Park Ecology Society (SPES). As I also pointed out at the time, this month’s count was led for the first time by Else Mikkelsen, a young but already quite experienced ecologist, naturalist and birder.

On this occasion, the group was able to admire a number of beautiful bird species, including the Hooded Mergansers featured in today’s post. The males were especially noticeable and looked even more exotic than usual, since they were in full courting mode. The low grunts they make are quite surprising (to see a video of this remarkable behaviour, click here). And as you can see on the third photo, the males can stretch out their necks quite a bit.

All photos taken on November 8, 2015 with a handheld Nikon D5200 and AF-S Zoom-Nikkor 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6G IF-ED. Not baited, called in or set up.

DSC_0652 (1)Female with prey — ISO 1600 | 300mm | f/5.6 | 1/200, cropped

DSC_0570Male courting a female — ISO 1600 | 300mm | f/5.6 | 1/250, cropped

DSC_0474Two males — ISO 1600 | 300mm | f/5.6 | 1/500, cropped for composition

DSC_0616Two females — ISO 1600 | 300mm | f/5.6 | 1/160, cropped

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