February 05, 2015
This is a hooded merganser we saw in Florida.
It was in the company of several males and one female.
I don't know if this was a display to scare off the others or just a shake after grooming.
Along with Wood Ducks and other cavity-nesting ducks, Hooded Mergansers often lay their eggs in other females’ nests. This is called “brood parasitism” and is similar to the practice of Brown-headed Cowbirds, except that the ducks only lay eggs in nests of their own species. Female Hooded Mergansers can lay up to about 13 eggs in a clutch, but nests have been found with up to 44 eggs in them.
The oldest Hooded Merganser on record was 14 years, 6 months old.