This week’s photo, taken March 31, 2014 at Meadowbrook Pond in northeast Seattle, WA, features a male RING-NECKED DUCK.
The RING-NECKED DUCK is a real stunner, with its unique pattern of white on the bill, its bright golden eyes, and its gray and white flanks. But what’s up with the name? Where the heck is the neck ring?
Actually, in the photo above, the ringed neck is visible – sorta. See the Chestnut color on the front of the neck? Look closely. Yep, that’s it. I hope you weren’t expecting it to be more obvious.
A better name for this handsome species might be “Ring-billed Duck,” in reference to one of its more distinctive features. Or how about “Cool Hairdo Duck?” Is it too much to ask that a bird have a name that could help us with its identification? I have no idea what somebody was thinking when they named this species, but if I ever meet that person, I probably will wring their neck.
Joe’s Best Bird Photos: http://joe-sweeney.fineartamerica.com