Friday, April 6, 2018

Green-Winged Teal at the San Luis National Wildlife Refuge

My duck education continues. As I noted in my last post, duck identification has lagged many other species, since I haven't seen too many kinds along my river walks. But I continue to visit the local wildlife refuges, and I keep seeing new species (not rare species mind you, just species I haven't noted before). Today the species is our smallest duck, the Green-winged Teal (Anas crecca). The second, rather poorer photo shows the reason for their name.
The Green-winged Teal is a winter visitor to the region. They migrate into Canada for breeding, so it's probably not that many weeks before they will disappear from our region.

I need to remind myself every so often what a remarkable place this is that I live in. The wildlife refuges of the Great Valley either preserve, or are attempting to reconstruct, the original savannas and wetlands that were the original heritage of our valley. 90-95% of the original landscape has been transformed into agricultural fields. Wandering through the grasslands and marshes, one is seeing a part of California that was almost eliminated. It is a privilege to wander these lands.

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