Tufted Duck in Morris County – found on Nov. 22, 2021

Tufted Duck, Loantaka Brook Reservation, Morris Co., NJ, Nov. 22, 2021 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Chris Neff found a Tufted Duck at Kitchell Pond at Loantaka Brook Reservation on November 22, 2021 and thinks the duck may have been there the day before. Many others have observed the duck since.

Eleven previous records of Tufted Duck are recorded in New Jersey (http://njbrc.com/documents/ARL.pdf). This is the first for Morris County and the first this far inland as far as is known. The other records are from coastal locations as well as Bergen and Salem counties. It will be up to the New Jersey Bird Records Committee to accept this as a valid New Jersey record.

This duck took a few hours to determine the identification. An adult male Tufted Duck is relatively easy to identify, but the one at Loantaka…not so. The Aythya genus can be problematic at times, especially with the possibility of a hybrid.

It is determined with the help of Tom Johnson and others that the Loantaka individual is a pure Tufted Duck (TUDU in abbreviated bird-banding-speak) showing no signs of hybridization. 

The tuft is tough to see in certain conditions, especially when the duck’s head is wet. Note the wide nail of the bill. Interestingly there are a smattering of Tufted Duck reports currently from Vermont as well as New Brunswick, Labrador, and Newfoundland in Canada.

Tufted Duck, Loantaka Brook Reservation, Morris Co., NJ, Nov. 22, 2021 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)
Tufted Duck, Loantaka Brook Reservation, Morris Co., NJ, Nov. 22, 2021 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

View local eBird checklists in the mocosocoBirds region via eBird’s Region Explorer. Use the following links:

The eBird Hotspot Primer is here and can also be accessed via the Hotspot menu item on the mocosocoBirds.com website.


The mocosocoBirds Facebook page is located here and also posts timely information not found on the mocosocoBirds web site.
@mocosocoBirds at Twitter is another communications stream. Instant field reports and links of interest are tweeted as they occur. The latest tweets appear on the sidebar of this page. One can follow mocosocoBirds at Twitter or link to @mocosocoBirds.


The New Jersey Bird Records Committee web site is here and contains the list of accepted records, the list of review species, and annual reports.


Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology’s Birds of the World online encyclopedia is here.


Finis


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3 Responses to Tufted Duck in Morris County – found on Nov. 22, 2021

  1. kelleydog says:

    Great birding, David Bernstein.

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  2. Smullen says:

    Thank you Jonathan for the post.  There were lots of happy birders on Tuesday at Loantakaincluding me.BestDorothy

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