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moderated Barrow's or Barrow's x Common hybrid ?

Federico Pacheco
 

Hi,

I found this male Goldeneye at Shoreline Lake this morning. It was by itself swimming and diving between the island and the southern edge of the lake. Initially, I thought it was a Barrow's Goldeneye because the white crescent mark looked good, but looking at the photos I also noticed that it is missing the black spur. Is it a hybrid instead?  Any thoughts?

Thank you!

 

-Federico

Bill Bousman
 

Dear Ferderico,

Nice image!  Yes, this is one of the two hybrids that have been around most of the time this winter season.  As you noted, the facial crescent is good for a Barrow's, but there is no shoulder spur.  Moreover, the back and wing covert pattern on a Barrow's should be mostly black with 6 or 7 small white rectangles.  Except for the black lower line, this back pattern is similar to a male Common.  Also, the bill in profile is closer to a Common.  (The other hybrid has a similar back pattern as on this male, but its facial patch is just an elongated oval.)

Bill Bousman
Menlo Park

On 1/18/2020 11:05 PM, Federico Pacheco wrote:

Hi,

I found this male Goldeneye at Shoreline Lake this morning. It was by itself swimming and diving between the island and the southern edge of the lake. Initially, I thought it was a Barrow's Goldeneye because the white crescent mark looked good, but looking at the photos I also noticed that it is missing the black spur. Is it a hybrid instead?  Any thoughts?

Thank you!

 

-Federico