1. English and Scientific names: White-winged Scoter, Melanitta fusca.

2. Number of individuals, sexes, ages, general plumage (e.g., 2 in alternate plumage):1  presumed first year bird.

3. Locality: Parish:   ____Jackson________________________________________

   Specific Locality: _____Chatham Lake, Chatham Louisiana. Viewed from around the dam end of lake.__________________________________________

4. Date(s) when observed: February 3, 2014

5. Time(s) of day when observed: Mid-afternoon, approx. 3:25 pm. We birded the lake from 2:55 pm to 3:55 pm and the scoter was first spotted about halfway through that time and watched until we left.

6. Reporting observer and address: Jonathan Clark, PO Box 703, Jena, LA 71342

7. Other observers accompanying reporter who also identified the bird(s): Tom Pollock

8. Other observers who independently identified the bird(s): A number of other birders have observed this bird and reported on labird and/or ebird and/or LBRC. Those include William Matthews, Stephen Pagans, John Dillon, Gerry Click, Charlie Lyons, and I believe others.

9. Light conditions (position of bird in relation to shade and to direction and amount of light): Cloudy sky. Unobstructed view of the duck. The duck was in the open.

10. Optical equipment (type, power, condition): Bushnell binoculars, 10x42, good condition. If I recall correctly, Tom’s binocs are 10x40 and good condition.

11. Distance to bird(s): Varying. Closest was probably 250 feet, farthest was probably around 200 yards, maybe more.

12. Duration of observation: about 30 minutes total.

13. Habitat: Open water of small reservoir lake.

14. Behavior of bird / circumstances of observation (flying, feeding, resting; include and stress habits used in identification; relate events surrounding observation):

   Tom Pollock and myself finished a planned 5 hour trip atlasing the Olla E quad for LWBA and decided to ride up to see the scoter and goldeneye at Chatham, less than an hour’s drive away. We arrived where previous labird posts from W. Matthews, S. Pagans, and perhaps others said the birds could be seen, which is the area around the dam at the east end of the lake. The Common Goldeneye was easier to find. Eventually I spotted the scoter and Tom confirmed its identity. Viewed first from the lakeside road on south side of lake (Maple Street) a short ways west of the dam. We thought we might get a better view of the bird, which was perhaps a little closer to the other shore, if we went to the road over there (Chatham Lake Road). That turned out not to be true and we could see that the scoter and other ducks were moving closer to where we had been in the first place. When we got back over there we got our closest and clearest looks at the ducks and took photos. Tom’s photos from the pier are best and the one he sent me is attached to this report.

   The duck was loosely associated with Lesser Scaups when first spotted. It hung out for a while in the middle of the east end of the lake. The bird was preening for a good while; resting almost on its side in the water, spinning in gradual circles as it nibbled at the wing feathers and plumage on its sides. There appeared to be noticeably lighter feathers on the underside that were visible when the bird was in this position.

   The bird did dive a number of times and was in the group with the scaups, Ruddy Duck, and Common Goldeneye for the closer views.

15. Description (include only what was actually seen, not what "should" have been seen; include if possible: total length/relative size compared to other familiar species, body bulk, shape, proportions, bill, eye, leg, and plumage characteristics. Stress features that separate it from similar species):

   It was noticeably larger than the Lesser Scaups that were seen alongside it. A dark colored duck with the only obvious markings being the squarish white patch in the wing, white oval on the side of the head, and small white area of plumage by the base of the bill. The bill was somewhat large. The profile of the head and bill was pretty unique compared to the other ducks present, especially the scaups.

   The overall color was a sooty color; smudgy black-brown, with only subtle variation. The white area in the folded wing seemed reasonably crisp, while the white patches on cheek and by base of bill were more smudged, though still quite distinct. Bill color was black or otherwise dark

16. Voice: not heard.

17. Similar species (include how they were eliminated by your observation): Probably only could be confused with other scoter spp. The white patch in the folded wing sets it apart from Surf and Black Scoters.

18. Photographs or tape recordings obtained? (by whom? attached?): Photograph by Tom Pollock attached.

19. Previous experience with this species: This was a life list first for both Tom and me.

20. Identification aids: (list books, illustrations, other birders, etc. used in identification):

a. at time of observation: Sibley’s Guide.

b. after observation: Sibley’s Guide, various online resoures such as the Cornell Bird ID site.

21. This description is written from: ___X__ notes made during the observation (_____notes attached?);___X__notes made after the observation (date:__2/3/2014___); __X___memory.

22. Are you positive of your identification if not, explain: Yes.

23. Date:___3/9/2014_______Time:___10:50 pm____

24. May the LBRC have permission to display this report or
portions of this report on its website? ____Yes____________________

If yes, may we include your name with the report? __Yes________________