4:15 AM. Shower, coffee, kiss Daisy good-bye. Rain and cold and dark. Queens Boulevard, Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, Grand Central Parkway, Triboro Bridge, Major Deegan, Thruway, Tappan Zee Bridge, Thruway, sunrise, Exit 23. Home, feed cats, drop off stuff, pick up other stuff. 787, I-90, Northway, Exit 6, Route 7, Rosendale Road. Lock 7.

King Eider!!! The juvenile male that John Hershey, a local birder, found and posted about on the local listserv. Not only year bird number 305 but also a lifer!

Then off to work. Not a bad Monday morning. And especially not bad considering that on Sunday Jory and I had unsuccessfully scoped through hundreds of Common Eider out at the tip of Long Island hoping to find a King Eider hiding among them and here one was not fifteen minutes out of the way on my way to work.

horrible shot of a juvenile male King Eider

best shot I could get

A better picture of a King Eider and some interesting research on the species can be found here.

Update: Jeff Nadler, bird photographer, just posted these shots of the juvenile King Eider.

Written by Corey
Corey is a New Yorker who lived most of his life in upstate New York but has lived in Queens since 2008. He's only been birding since 2005 but has garnered a respectable life list by birding whenever he wasn't working as a union representative or spending time with his family. He lives in Forest Hills with Daisy and Desmond Shearwater. His bird photographs have appeared on the Today Show, in Birding, Living Bird Magazine, Bird Watcher's Digest, and many other fine publications. He is also the author of the American Birding Association Field Guide to the Birds of New York.