Wednesday, November 29, 2023

RBA: BAIKAL TEAL in Sarita - Nov 28th

At 3pm on Nov 28-2023, Andrew Westerhof found a probable immature male Baikal Teal at the mouth of Carnation Creek. The bird was with 7 Green-winged Teals. The bird is in eclipse plumage moulting into alternate. 

Distinguishing a hybrid in this plumage would be very hard until the bird acquired its proper adult plumage. However, the general shape, face pattern including dark behind, below and in front of the eye, leg colour and apparent colouration are seemingly to be coming in correctly. The under-tail coverts look good for Baikal Teal and the white on the trailing edge of the wing is broad and conspicuous, as it should be in this species and the speculum is also consistent with Baikal Teal.

Map to location HERE

This bird is located on private gated land at a Coho Research station that is not accessible to the public. The locked gate is several kms from where the bird was seen so birders cannot even view it through the gate.

The only way to get near to the area is by boat but please note the estuary is very shallow so even a boat would likely not get close enough in order to see the bird. Note also no boat rentals are available near to the area at this time of year.

Birders may want to check Sarita Estuary HERE (about 10 kms away) in case the bird moves there but they must seek permission from the Huu-hay-aht First Nations to walk on the land. 

Multiple experts in Asia have confirmed this to be a bird pure in their opinions. 

If confirmed and accepted by the BRC, this would be the 3rd accepted record for BC.

The bird has was not relocated on Nov 29th or Nov 30th.

Probable Baikal Teal in Bamfield - Photos: Andrew Westerhof 

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