Sole Duck


This week’s photo, taken April 15, 2014 along the Sol Duc River in Olympic National Park, WA, features a male HARLEQUIN DUCK in breeding plumage.

One of the highlights of our glorious 3-day stay at Sol Duc Hot Springs and Resort in Olympic National Park is our walk along the 6-mile loop trail that follows the Sol Duc River to Sol Duc Falls and back. (“Sol Duc” is a Quillayute term that means “sparkling waters”). Occasionally, the route bends away from the roaring waterway and deep into the magnificent old-growth forest, where the most common sound is no sound at all. Now and then, a PACIFIC WREN appears on a moss-covered branch and serenades us with its wonderfully energetic song that seems to last forever.

When the path returns to the river’s edge, we spot a few AMERICAN DIPPERS dipping under the rushing stream, in search of food. Besides the Dippers, the only other bird we observe along the river is one HARLEQUIN DUCK lounging on a large rock in the middle of the fast-moving current. That lone bird must be the sole duck of the Sol Duc River.

Joe’s Best Bird Photos:


About Joe Sweeney

I photograph birds to share the beauty and wonder I find in nature.
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5 Responses to Sole Duck

  1. Susan Kritzik says:

    Really stunning!
    Susan K.

  2. Pamela Conley says:

    I haven’t seen one of these in over 15 years. So beautiful! We are off to Honduras birding next week.


    Sent from my iPad


  3. kathydoremus says:

    I always love pictures like this one, where you can still see the water droplets.

  4. Chris VB says:

    It’s a beauty.

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