Drake Common Merganser in icy water and breeding plumage – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/1250, ISO 250, +0.7 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
This summer’s heat has really gotten to me lately and with September just around the corner I can start looking forward to lower temperatures after next week when temps will drop below the high 90’s . I don’t think this August will be a record breaking month because we had a few cooler days but generally it has been hotter than normal and this entire summer certainly has.
Sometimes all I need to do is look at photos from cooler days to feel refreshed so I dug into my archives and found a few to share today.
Back in February there was still snow on the ground, ice on the water and Common Mergansers were at Farmington Bay WMA and some were sporting their breeding plumage. Common Mergansers have long, reddish serrated bills that help them to grasp the fish they eat. The males have velvety, green heads while in breeding plumage and plenty of white feathers that contrast with their dark backs, green heads and red bills.
Common Merganser in icy water at Farmington Bay – Nikon D500, f7.1, 1/1250, ISO 250, +0.3 EV, Nikkor 500mm VR with 1.4x TC, natural light
These streamlined birds dive and chase after their prey underwater. They also look streamlined while in flight and move so quickly through the air that I have very few images of them in flight.
Here in northern Utah I see mergansers more often during winter and spring than any other time of the year, the Common Mergansers do not breed here and neither do their close relatives the Red-breasted Mergansers.
I’ll be happy to see cooler days soon along with the birds that will be showing up here in northern Utah that I haven’t seen in a while.
Life is good.