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Mergellus albellus


A small merganser of northern Europe and Asia. The male is mostly white with black markings. The bill is hook tipped and serrated for catching fish. The smew is 38–44 cm (15–17 in) long. Females generally resemble female Goldeneyes, but they are more slender and have white colouring on their necks extending onto their cheeks forming a sharp boundary with their reddish brown caps (pics 3-5).


Spotted at Woodland Park Zoo.

No species ID suggestions


Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway a month ago

Smew !? Never heard of those but the male is sure a handsome dude.

That was an interesting find!

mauna Kunzah
mauna Kunzah a month ago

NP, Brian. The female is cute too.

Brian38 a month ago

Thanks for commenting Mauna. They where interesting to watch - even in their captive environment. I added pictures of the female.

mauna Kunzah
mauna Kunzah a month ago

I like its name and hairstyle.

Brian38 a month ago

Thanks for commenting Sukanya. New for me as well.

SukanyaDatta a month ago

Very distinctive colouration...never knew...thanks, Brian.

Seattle, Washington, USA

Lat: 47.67, Long: -122.35

Spotted on Mar 23, 2019
Submitted on Mar 27, 2019


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