Bird ID Help Please!

Attention all you birders who love a challenge!

One of my blog readers in Edmonton, Alberta sent me this bird picture he took last August, and asked for some help with the identification of this species.

While yes, at first glance it does look like a blue-winged teal, a closer look will reveal some discrepancies, as pointed out by the confused birder.

“The white patch is totally different on this bird. It is not in a half moon shape in front of the eye & is not narrow. The white clearly extends well past the eye & is not half moon shaped & is much wider. Also most of the white is above the eye which is also not a Teal trait??? Also most of the side body on a Teal is spotted feathers. This one is not spotted.”

And before you ask, no he did not manage to get any other pictures of this strange bird. That would have been too easy..

Please leave your suggestions in the comments below or tweet me @patbumstead, and thanks for helping!

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3 Responses to Bird ID Help Please!

  1. Andrew Baksh says:

    The only bird I could think of that looks like this is a Blue-winged Teal.

  2. Kerry says:

    Thought maybe it was a Horned Grebe from the description not sure from the picture?

  3. I think it is a Blue-winged Teal although with an unusual head detail. All of the other features match up. The only other duck species with a white blob in front of the eye that I can think of are the Goldeneyes and Spectacled Duck and they don’t otherwise match.