Wednesday, August 3, 2011

C for Coot (ABC Wednesday)

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On Sunday I was out for a walk by a little lake in town which is also a bird sanctuary, and came across this sight: Two different birds each on their own branch of an old tree. The top one would be a common mallard, but the other one I was less sure of, until I got home and could look it up in my bird book: (Eurasian) coot.  (Swedish: sothöna – Latin: Fulica atra)

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Funny how sometimes when you learn something (or the name of something), you seem to soon come across it again! Two days later I was at another lake and was told by a friend who is an experienced birdwatcher that two birds we could see from a distance there were also coots, but young ones who had not yet developed the characteristic white facial shield of the adults. That I doubt I would have been able to figure out by myself from that distance (since in this case there was no adult bird in sight).

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“The juvenile is paler than the adult, has a whitish breast, and lacks the facial shield; the adult black plumage develops when about 3–4 months old, but the white shield is only fully developed at about one year old.” (Wikipedia)

ABC Wednesday 

8 comments:

  1. I have never seen a real coot, now I will know what they look like and be looking. All we ever seem to have is mallards and the occasional heron. Do you have any loons there?

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  2. I know there are loons in Sweden but not sure if there are any "around here" i.e. in the two lakes I usually visit... Not sure I'd recognize one if I saw one. I'm new at this birdwatching thing, you know... It's the combination of the digital camera, the internet and blogging that's got me watching and wondering and trying to look things up!

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  3. Pretty pictures :)

    Here's mine:
    http://carabossesbedchamber.blogspot.com/2011/08/abc-wednesday-challenge.html

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  4. I'd not heard of a Coot. (except when my grandmother would say that grandpa was being "an old coot"!) I am also finding that digital camera interests lead to some bird watching. Fun to learn these new things, isn't it!?

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  5. I'm not much of a bird identifier. informative.


    ROG, ABC Wednesday team

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  6. That is certainly a coot. The bald pate gave rise to the saying: 'As bald as a coot' - I might be heading that way too.

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  7. cute little coots, of which I am new to. they look a lot like ducks. i have heard of them but not seen them and like you even if someone told me, i would have trouble telling what they were the next day.

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  8. I've known a couple of "old coots" in my day but they didn't have feathers! Nice photos!

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