Scrappy Scaup


Yep, I’m a scrappy scaup. Lesser Scaup that is. My brothers and cousins come in huge numbers and love to winter along the Chesapeake Bay. We’re little diving ducks that love the water.


One of my favorite things to do with my cousins is to confuse little birders and bird photographers. See my cousin, the Greater Scaup looks almost just like me. In the wrong light, we look like identical twins. But my head color is purple, while the Greater Scaup’s is green. I’m also a little funky with my hairdo.


For those looking at scaup in the water and ask yourself time and time again, here is a great photo guide to help figure out which one is which. 


My ladies are rather subdued, but have a splash of white on their nose just to keep things fun.


In the meantime, I’ll keep hanging around all my duck friends at the Wall of Shame in Cambridge, Maryland and run over them whenever they get in my way.



20 replies »

  1. To think that there are folks that can ID these guys from a distance. Amazing!
    Very kewl shots. Thanks for the intro to Mr. Scrappy!

  2. Thanks for sharing such detail in the differences between the two Scaups. I have always had a difficult time distinguishing between the two, you made it seem so simple!! Printing this out for my bird file/notes for future help. 🙂

  3. Great set of pictures (again), and very helpful guide, now if I ever see these guys I’ll be the nerd in the group who points out the differences (most likely I won’t remember which one is Greater, which is Lesser but I’ll know they’re different!).

    He’s pretty cool with his almost bro-hawk. I think their feathers look like some fancy men’s vest or sweater, like they should be headed to the country club! The ladies are cute, I like the little extra white “lipstick”. 😉

    It is so funny how ducks just run over each other like that. It’s also impressed me how birders can differentiate them so quickly, but then again my mom can sometimes hear a car and know; my dad, a boat; my grandpa, a plane. And in my group they think I’m good for pointing out this bird and that bird and how they’re different. Seems the Wall of Shame would be a perfect place to practice. 🙂

    • Love it ! Bro-hawk. That is totally what that scrappy scaup has for his hair do.

      Really, ducks running over each other is quite hilarious. Amazing how they don’t get mad at each other when it happens either.

      Indeed, the wall of shame is wonderful for lots and lots of practice. And way too many shots to deal with. Can’t wait until you become a bird expert too. Next thing we know, you’ll be singing along with them in harmony.

      • Oh I would sing along and do! I’d be one of the weirdos at times I think I’d have to look over my shoulder before talking to them and myself about them. 😉 I can’t wait for more practice myself. I gotta make it happen.

        Not all birds are so forgiving about others running them over!

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