In a recent post I highlighted two pair of Redheads that dropped into the Wetlands for the day. The following day the birds were gone, presumably continuing on to wherever it was they were originally heading.
A line of heavy storms moved through our area on Friday, two days after the four redheads were with us. Soon after the heaviest of the rain passed, I noticed a lone redhead swimming in our Wetlands, a female. There’s no way to know if this is one of the original four from two days prior or another redhead passing through who happened to hit bad weather and took advantage of the quiet waters of our Wetland.
The duck tried cozying up to the two Canada Geese that are currently using our Wetland. Not having much in common with the geese, except of course the fact that they can each swim and fly, she moved on to the resident mergansers. The mergansers seemed to accept her presence. Both are diving ducks. She stayed close to the mergs most of the day.
The redhead would at times go off on her own to dive and feed. But the need for company must be a strong one, as she stuck close to the mergansers for the better part of the day. The mergansers, on the other hand, seemed completely unconcerned with her, going about their normal routine of fishing, preening and bathing throughout the day. It was the redhead who followed along with the mergansers.
Still with us on Tuesday (2/25/14) the female redhead now seemed more comfortable with here surroundings, spending most of the day by herself.
How long will she stay? She was swimming and diving when I left at the end of the day Tuesday so perhaps she’ll stay with us a bit longer although it’s difficult to predict how long. For now she seems comfortable feeding and resting in our Wetland. But, one day soon the urge to move will overcome her and she’ll take flight for the potholes and sloughs of the northwest plains.