Friday, 22 August 2014

Eiders in Eclipse

At this time of year, the distinctive eider duck becomes slightly less instantly recognisable, with the males in eclipse plumage. Not all males look alike in eclipse either, and there are a variety of black and white plumages to be seen at this time of the year in among the plain brown females. I took this photo of two male eiders earlier today at Musselburgh. If you click on the photo below you'll get a bigger view, and you'll see the face shape is still very distinctive, even if the plumage is currently confusing (if you don't know what a male eider looks like in breeding plumage, you can find out on the RSPB website).

It was lovely and sunny today at Musselburgh and the Lagoons were full of birds. Lots of oystercatchers, several lapwings, several dunlin still in breeding plumage, about nine ruffs (none in breeding plumage!), seven sandwich terns and two secretive snipes, one of which boldly moved into the open to have a bath, which was a lovely sight!

As ever, red text contains hyperlinks which take you to other websites where you can find out more.

5 comments:

TexWisGirl said...

the eiders are a neat sighting.

Caroline Gill said...

'Eclipse' was a new term to me and very apt for this phase of the Eider's plumage and calendar. Such stunning birds ...

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful outing and sightings. I like the Eiders.. Have a happy weekend!

josephinaballerina said...

Eclipse plumage is new to me, too. Went to the website. They are Very Striking Ducks, aren't they?

Rabbits' Guy said...

So many kinds of birds to see and report on! Pretty busy bird-time around here too. Some beginning to flock, while the herons are dispersing to their solitary winter territories.