The female Bufflehead that stayed here while every other bird of her ilk flew north in the spring has made it successfully through our summer. I saw her in early October swimming and diving in the southern part of the North Basin. She seemed energetic, preening vigorously, diving, and generally in fine feather.
I had worried about her. As the only member of the Bufflehead tribe here, with no close family to rely on, she seemed at risk. I did see her earlier in the summer keeping company with some of the local resident American Coots, and before that with a group of Willets. In my recent sighting she was all alone, and looked none the worse for it.
I’m curious to see what she will do when other Bufflehead migrate here in the winter, as they usually do. Unfortunately I’ll never find out because one female Bufflehead looks much like another to our dull human eyes.
For earlier coverage, see: https://chavezpark.org/bufflehead-solo-still-here/ and https://chavezpark.org/outliers/