Barrow's Goldeneye - Photo Copyright Ward Cameron 2003 - Click to view a larger image Barrow's Goldeneye - Photo Copyright Ward Cameron 2003 - Click to view a larger image Barrow's Goldeneye - Photo Copyright Ward Cameron 2003 - Click to view a larger image Barrow's Goldeneye - Photo Copyright Ward Cameron 2003 - Click to view a larger image  
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Barrow's Goldeneye
Bucephala islandica

Diving Ducks
Waterfowl Family (Anatidae)

Size: Length: 33 cm Wingspan: 79 cm

Description: Similar to the less prevalent common goldeneye, this diving duck is common in the northern parts of the study area, particularly from Jasper north. The males have a dark head with a purple sheen. A large crescent-shaped, white cheek spot is clearly visible in front of the namesake golden eye. The black back has numerous white markings. It also downward slightly into the white forebody. This, along with the larger cheek spot easily distinguishes it from the common goldeneye. Females are virtually impossible to distinguish from common goldeneyes. They have a reddish head, white neck patch and a gray body.

Nesting is in tree cavities, but they occasionally adopt former crows nests. The young jump from the nest and swim about with their mother until they can fly on their own. Barrow's goldeneyes prefer higher elevation alkaline lakes. This makes them more common in the mountains than the common goldeneye which prefers the foothills and plains.

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All Material Ward Cameron 2005

 

 

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