Hooded Merganser

Scientific Name: Lophodytes cucullatus

Mergansers are typical diving ducks, characteristically feeding below the surface of the water.  While the Hooded Merganser is an excellent underwater swimmer and takes its share of fish, it also feeds on crustaceans and insects.  In late winter and early spring, it is often possible to observe thier interesting courtship displays.  The drake typically shows off his handsome crest and then arches his neck quickly backwards so that his head nearly touches his back

The drake is buff below with a white chest and black back and head.  The contrasting white head patch and creasted appearance are diagnostic.  Females are light brown with a pale crest.

Breeds from southeasternmost Alaska south to Oregon, and from Manitoba east to Nova Scotia south to Arkansas.  Winters on the California coast, and from Gulf Coast northward to New England.

(reference: National Audubon Society Pocket Guide

 

Atlantic Flyway

East Coast Waterfowlers Capt Steve King, NY

Ocean State Outfitters Capt Jeremiah Brooks, RI, MA

Cassel’s Waterfowl Outfitters Capt Dennis Cassel, NJ

Mississippi Flyway

Ragged Reef Outfitters, Capt Bill Nyman

Land and Lake imaging, Danny Klauss “photographer”

Central Flyway

Flyway Taxidermy, Jerry Froelich “taxidermist”

Pacific Flyway

Alaska Trophy Adventures, Capt Charlie Summerville