The Pink Feet (video)

On Novemeber 29th, I met up with Tom Johnson and his girlfriend & hawk counter extraordinaire, Melissa Roach, for our pursuit of THE Pink-footed Goose (Anser brachyrhynchus) that had been found by August Mirabella at Pine Run Reservoir, in Bucks County, PA.

We arrived on-site at mid-afternoon, on a dreary day with rain coming, and we were the only birders on scene at the time.

“I have the bird!” Melissa said, and Tom and I caught our breath…

Pink-footed Goose (Anser brachyrhynchus)

Pink-footed Goose (Anser brachyrhynchus) at Pine Run Reservoir, Bucks County, PA 11/29/2011

This species, typically found overwintering in Scotland & England, was a lifer for Melissa and I. For Tom it was almost as significant, one of those “better view desired” situations.

“OH NO!!” I replied, over-dramatically & fully in jest (because it’s unnecessary for a positive ID). “HOW WILL WE SEE THE PINK FEET WITH IT SWIMMING?!?!”

I started shooting video clips of ‘The Bird’ with my new Canon PowerShot ELPH 300HS, shooting the same 120 frames-per-second slow-motion clips that I used for the White Ibis. The slow-motion has the added advantage of reducing the shaking effect from hand-holding the little digital camera up to the 30x eyepiece of my Kowa spotting scope. Some of the shaking was due to the Lifer Effect. Some of it might have been the caffeine…

We noticed that the Pink Foot was spending an inordinate amount of time bathing and preening.

Well, my tongue-in-cheek distress over NOT seeing the famous pink feet was soon allayed by this bird’s vigorous bathing behavior!

After my first foray into the realm of home-movie-editing with the iMovie application, I present without further adieu, THE famous pink feet:

Pink-footed Goose’s pink feet (view on YouTube) by Andy McGann