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Photo Study: Harlequin Ducks at Barnegat Light, NJ

Alex Lamoreaux|

The Harlequin Duck is simultaneously the most beautiful and one of the most odd-looking species of waterfowl in North America, so there is no wonder it is a species high on most birder’s ‘Most Wanted’ lists. Well if you live on the east coast, one of the best places to see this wonderful little duck is at Barnegat Light in NJ. During the winter months, there can be anywhere from a handful to 20 or 30 of these clown-like ducks foraging right along the jetty at Barnegat, allowing you to watch them at incredibly close range. Being so close to these birds at Barnegat allows you to get an up-close look at their social interactions and also hear their squeaky calls, which has gotten them the nickname ‘Sea Mouse’. The following is a collection of photos that I have taken of Harlequin Ducks at Barnegat, celebrating their unique and strangely charming appearance.

Harlequin Duck - male (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Harlequin Duck - female (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Harlequin Duck - male (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Harlequin Duck - female (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Harlequin Duck - males (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

About the Author

Alex Lamoreaux

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Alex Lamoreaux has been an avid birder and naturalist since he was a youngster, growing up exploring the farmland and Appalachian ridges near Hershey, Pennsylvania. He attended Penn State University, studying wildlife biology. Alex has traveled extensively throughout North America, Central America, and South Africa and is a freelance nature tour guide, field biologist, and wildlife photographer. Alex has worked on wildlife research projects ranging from Whimbrel migration along the coast of Virginia to Yellow-billed Cuckoo nesting in the desert southwest. He has been the migration counter at the Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory for the past two fall seasons, documenting the massive visible migration of raptors and songbirds along Lake Superior. Alex loves to share his knowledge of nature, and strives to bring the birding community together to share in the fun that studying birds and wildlife has to offer. He has helped to organize and coordinate birding events in his home state of Pennsylvania and beyond. Contact Info Alex Lamoreaux aslamoreaux@gmail.com (717) 943-7086