Winter Duckfest Part V — Ring-Necked Ducks

You may enlarge any image in this blog by clicking on it.  Click again for a full screen image.

Ring-necked Ducks are among the ducks that I see most frequently when I visit Tucson’s man-made riparian areas in winter.  It seems as if every pond in every public park has its complement of these little divers.

They are very pretty.  They get their name from a ring that is supposedly present at the base of the males’ necks.

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The problem with that name is that the ring — very faintly visible in this image as a reddish purple iridescent line just at the point where the bird’s neck joins his chest — is almost always invisible.  Now, on the other hand, a Ring-necked Duck has a very prominent whitish ring just behind the tip of its bill.  That ring instantly identifies the duck.  Even better, it is visible on both males and females of this species.

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So, some have suggested renaming these ducks “Ring-billed Ducks.”  It’s probably not a bad idea.  Meanwhile, I’ll just say that they are beautiful and let it go at that.

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Images made with a Canon 5Diii, 100-400mm f4.5-5.6 ISII zoom lens, aperture priority setting.  All images made at ISO 400.  The first image shot at f6.3 @ 1/320.  The second image shot at f5.6 @ 1/250.  The third image shot at f7.1 @ 1/400.

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