I stumbled onto this duck nest while hiking along a creek. I took a quick shot and then skedaddled in hopes mama duck would soon return if the pesky humans departed.
Watching mama duck fly away I recalled my bird identification mentor from college. His ornithological skill was legendary, and it is to him I owe my keen ability to identify any bird using his unpatented, not-so-dichotomous key.
The professor’s ornithological identification system suits me perfectly. If you care to delve into the depths of birding, you just might like his method.
According to the professor, there are three things that must immediately be discerned about any unidentified bird, and, armed with that knowledge, you can neatly classify any bird.
The procedure is as follows:
- Calculate if said bird is small, medium, or large: This is a bit subjective, but you’ll get the hang of it with focused practice and calibration.
- Determine if said bird is brown or non-brown: A pocket sized color chart is helpful here.
- Ascertain if said bird is duck or non-duck: Consult reference materials if confused.
And so, there you have it. The bird that flew from this nest was a Medium Brown Duck.
Now go on out there and give it a try!