[CT Birds] Mallard X Pintail

greg hanisek ctgregh at yahoo.com
Sat Feb 12 12:31:51 EST 2011

This morning Bill Banks and I stopped by Raven Pond in Stratford, a place that's crammed full of Mallards all winter and usually holds an assortment of other things both wild, domestic and magnificently mongrelized. In addtion to some Black Ducks, 4 N. Pintails (1 adult male), a Mandarin Duck and at least one Mallard X Black Duck hybrid, there was a rather spectacular looking adult male Mallard X N. Pintail hybrid. The bird had the head shape and bill of a Pintail but the head was green. It had the ruddy breast of a Mallard but the tail of a Pintail. The rest of the body was sort of a melding of the two.
Sitting on the ice next to the impressive duck biomass was an immature Red-shouldered Hawk eating a Mallard. The live ducks ignored it. I'm not sure if the hawk killed the Mallard. The duck was so picked apart that it seemed clear this wasn't a fresh kill. The hawk had the longish tail and rather noticeable supercillium typical on a young RS. It certainly was a candidate for misID as a N. Goshawk.
Greg Hanisek

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