Hooded Merganser

What took you so long?

Some well overdue news breaking… Hooded Merganser finally makes it onto the British list. Quite why this particular duck spent so long in limbo is hard to know, as if ever a Nearctic duck was going to be wild, one in the Western Isles in November, arriving at the same time as a host of other Neartic wildfowl was going to be it.


It’s always struck me as weird that other showy Nearctic ducks seem to get accepted pretty much at face value by the wider birding community. Bufflehead? Blue-winged Teal? Bring ’em on. Heaven knows, you can even buy Green-winged Teals for a few quid from duck fanciers here in the UK, so god knows how many of the ‘vagrant’ ducks we see are the real deal. Frankly, unless they’re sporting half a wing and a collection of rings on each leg, you’ve got to give them the benefit of the doubt.

Am a little biased though, as this decision bodes well for the Unst bird of a few years ago. One of my more successful outings with the otherwise irritating Coolpix & Kowa combination…

 Hug a hoodie



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