Funny Wigeon
Anas Penelope


Photographer

Dick Newell

Date

Early March 2003

Location

Cambs.

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These 2 Wigeon, the first on the Ouse Washes and the second near Wicken Fen show traits normally associated with American Wigeon.

The first, female bird has what could be taken for white axillaries, if the sun was shining on them, but more remarkable is the black border to the base of the bill, which is supposed to be diagnostic of American Wigeon.

The second male bird is an extreme version of a common variant of Eurasian Wigeon. It is very similar to a Hybrid wigeon in plate 17 of the paper "A review of the status and identification of American Wigeon in Britain & Ireland" by Stephen C Votier et al, BB January 2003 Vol 96 No 1.

It is not uncommon to find Eurasian Wigeon with traits that seem to have derived from American Wigeon - are these mere variations, or have our Wigeon had repeated infusions of American genes?


P01788

P01789

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