Welcome to the BWCAW blog of Ely Outfitting Company and Boundary Waters Guide Service!

See our websites at ElyOutfittingCompany.com and BoundaryWatersGuideService.com.

We are a Boundary Waters canoe trip outfitter, Quetico outfitter, and guide service in Ely, Minnesota. This Boundary Waters blog shares photos, stories, humor, skills, and naturalist insights from guiding in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW).

Most entries are from our founder and head guide, Jason Zabokrtsky. He is the Boundary Waters Blogger.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Common Merganser and Ducklings on Lake One in the BWCAW


We paddled to a quiet bay away from the main travel route to look for wildlife on a guided day canoe trip today on Lake One.

Luckily, we spied this Common Merganser and her ducklings. The young were probably born in a hollow tree - where Mergansers typically nest. The mother must have just recently nudged the furball ducklings out of the nest because they are still tiny creatures. Part of me expected to see a giant pike splash out of the water after one of them.

We saw no sign of the male merganser, which is not uncommon. Motherhood is a lonely job for these females. The males typically play no part in raising the ducklings.

We watched this Common Merganser dive down looking for minnows to catch in its orange serrated bill - often called a sawbill. It didn't appear to succeed in hunting minnows, but it did successfully pluck a dragonfly nymph from a rock wall as it swam by.
Posted by Picasa

1 comment:

Chuck Z said...

Great picture Jason! The video of the store from your post the other day looks fabulous.

Say hello to everybody for me.