After a winter season of frozen lakes and wetlands, early spring blows in on warm southerly winds. Small pockets of ice begin to thaw. Accompanying the winds are ducks. They push the limits and begin their northly migration, even though another arctic blast may refreeze these pools.
Nothing against my neighbors to the north, but I like it when lakes and wetlands near me begin to open up but those further north are locked up in ice. I am in no hurry for warm weather to lure waterfowl further north. This gives us time to enjoy the migratory waterfowl.
As the season advances, the populations increase, creating an opportunity to investigate and identify the various species.
Colors and color-patterns are just two of several features used to identify ducks. One color that really draws attention is white. Yet, there are multiple species of birds with an abundance of white plumage. Upon closer inspection, you can start differentiating them. Keep in mind that the males and females look different.
Here are a few examples of male ducks with significant white plumage.
All of the species above are divers. A quick scan over a lake may not reveal much. But keep scanning. They just seem to pop up out of nowhere.
Enjoy the spring migration season!