Sunday, January 10, 2016

Lake Takanassee 1/10--Eurasian Wigeon

Eurasian Wigeon
Went looking for one rarity, came up with another. It rained all morning, but looked like it might break up, so Shari & I took a chance and drove up to Lake Takanassee to look for the Greater White-fronted Goose that had been there the last couple of days. We were quickly disappointed; another birder drove up behind us as I was starting to scan the geese to say the bird was gone. She'd already covered the lake a couple of times.

The lake is bifurcated by the NJ Transit railroad tracks. We decided to look into that part of the lake, so we walked under a rather dilapidated underpass and started to look around. First I saw a few Gadwalls, then a few wigeons and in with those wigeons I saw a Eurasian Wigeon, FOY and rare in NJ.

There always seems to be at least one Eurasian Wigeon in Monmouth County. The trick is to find it on the many artificial lakes and ponds that dot the seashore towns. This is the 3rd location reported for the species so far this year, but whether it is the same bird or multiple birds is unknown.

Even though the wigeon isn't as rare as the goose, it is more satisfying to find a rarity on your own then to just chase one down. And it is easily the Bird of the Day.
American Wigeon with Eurasian Wigeon for comparison

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