About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Common Goldeneye winters in Mid-Michigan

The Common Goldeneye (Bucephala clangula) is a medium-sized sea duck found throughout North America and Eurasia. In summer they breed in the northern parts of their range, mainly in Canada, the northern United States, northern Europe, and northern Russia.

Common goldeneyes spend most of their time on the water. They eat mainly aquatic insects during breeding season in northern, boreal lakes. In their winter ranges they rely on diving for fish, crustaceans, and mollusks.

If you spot a winter roost, listen for their whistling wings as they take off because the wind whistles through their wings when they fly.

Pairs form from December to March and last until the male abandons the female at the beginning of incubation. Males try to grab a females attention through some  spectacular courtship displays including the "head-throw-kick," in which a male repeatedly thrusts his head forward, then moves it back towards his rump and utters a call. He then flicks his head forward again while kicking the water with his feet.

You can check out eBird to see if there are any winter roosts near you. 

Related Articles:
New Bird Sighted: Hooded Merganser http://bit.ly/yI7HjD
Wood Duck Nest Box http://bit.ly/y89U1v
Bufflehead: Black and white duck http://goo.gl/q4J2jc
Mallard Nesting Behavior: Can I move the nest? http://bit.ly/xawSdh
Long Tailed Duck http://goo.gl/haHf2X

No comments: