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Photo Info

Dimensions5400 x 3600
Original file size7.94 MB
Image typeJPEG
Color spacesRGB
Date taken9-Aug-12 09:51
Date modified12-Feb-23 23:39
Shooting Conditions

Camera modelNIKON D2X
Focal length420 mm
Focal length (35mm)630 mm
Max lens aperturef/4
Exposure1/640 at f/5
FlashNot fired
Exposure bias-2/3 EV
Exposure modeAuto
Exposure prog.Aperture priority
ISO speedISO 100
Metering modePattern
Digital zoom1x
Harlequin Duck_Juvenile_JF03498

Harlequin Duck_Juvenile_JF03498

I believe this is a juvenile. It was one of several in a family of Harlequin Ducks (Histrionicus histrionicus) deftly navigating white water on the Yellowstone River. It could have been one of a summer flock of females. But there seemed to be one that stood watch over the others as they swam in the current. That appeared like motherly oversight to me. And the more whitish coloring across the face above the bill on the bird in the image seems distinct from the pattern on adult females I've seen in field guides.

Like Dippers, they feed on aquatic insects by diving in fast moving, clear and clean streams. They may also feed on small fish.

Northwestern Wyoming is the southeastern-most tip of their breeding range.

Location: Yellowstone National Park, WY