Tufted Duck – 1st Orange County Record – January 23, 2016

A local birder named Roger Schoedel had found this Tufted Duck on January 23rd 2016 in the Santa Ana river just behind Riverside Park.  Since this was a 1st county record numerous reports of this sighting followed that same day and afterward.  On January 24, 2016 I had opted to pursue this species and found the Tufted Duck in the same location as reported previously.  Similarly and at a quick glance, it can appear this is a Ring-necked Duck or Greater/Lesser Scaup and easily dismissed especially since you’re not expecting to see one of these Tufted Ducks in this area.  However, upon further inspection, you might note the bill is quite different than the latter ducks and also the clear indicator is the “tufted” area at the rear of its head.  Here are a few more images of the Tufted Duck

Photo Upper Santa Ana River--Tustin Ave. to Lakeview Ave., Orange, CA on January 24, 2016. Accessible through Riverside Park rear entrance.
Photo Upper Santa Ana River–Tustin Ave. to Lakeview Ave., Orange, CA on January 24, 2016. Accessible through Riverside Park rear entrance.
Photo Upper Santa Ana River--Tustin Ave. to Lakeview Ave., Orange, CA on January 24, 2016.
Photo Upper Santa Ana River–Tustin Ave. to Lakeview Ave., Orange, CA on January 24, 2016.

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