Date: 2/7/18 2:20 pm
From: Karen Strong <kstrong1109...>
Subject: [cobirds] Hybrid ducks mystery
Please forgive my ignorance - I'm a brand new birder & have only been
observing for a little over a month.

I saw these ducks yesterday (2/6/18) in the pond in Prospect Park, Wheat
Ridge. My best guess is that they are Mallard-Northern Shoveler hybrids.
They resemble male Mallards, in that they have green heads, yellow bills,
and those curly "butt" feathers (I'm sure there's a more proper term for
those). But they were significantly larger than a Mallard they paddled by
- they were about the size of a cackling goose that was also nearby. And
then there are those white chest markings. Northern Shovelers have white
chests, and the front duck's bill definitely looks Shoveler-like in shape.
But Northern Shovelers are even smaller than Mallards. Could the
offspring of a Mallard-N. Shoveler mating be larger than either species?
Do these species even "commingle"?

<https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-NiB2TQd-V00/WnsY4grz4cI/AAAAAAAACHw/rt1YahlKDXULyHpRseQAIOS-c7cE2ObugCLcBGAs/s1600/2.6.18%2Bodd%2Bducks.jpg>

Thanks to anyone who can enlighten me!

Karen Strong
Conifer, CO

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