Banded Hen Redhead

GoPackers

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My son in law, who's in the Army, shot his first banded bird over the weekend, and it had a bunch of white feathers on top of the head. Any idea what might cause that? The band report stated it was a 2 year old bird, banded in Stillwater, NV on July 14, 2012.

Thx for any guesses or insight, curious.
 

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GoPackers

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No kidding, 2 funny....Back in the mid 80's on Pool #7 of the Upper Mississippi Wildlife Refuge, the Wildlife biologists decided they should spray paint the underwings of recently banded hen bluebills bright pink, and the drakes with lime green, so birders could track them along their migration route...talk about a target on your back!

I don't think many of them made it to their wintering grounds after the article ran in the local paper.
 

Gun N Run

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Was it banded in 2012 as an adult or juvenile? Could be much older if banded as an adult. White feathers on the head are usually caused by age, but I suppose it's not out of the question to be caused by genetics if it was only 2.
 

Green Duck Truck

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No kidding, 2 funny....Back in the mid 80's on Pool #7 of the Upper Mississippi Wildlife Refuge, the Wildlife biologists decided they should spray paint the underwings of recently banded hen bluebills bright pink, and the drakes with lime green, so birders could track them along their migration route...talk about a target on your back!

I don't think many of them made it to their wintering grounds after the article ran in the local paper.

Capt. Cormorant and I were talking with Phil Robertson a number of years ago at the OWF, and he was telling us about shooting a bright yellow Canvasback out of a flock, and it was banded. Came to find out the same thing, that it was captured, banded & dyed. Like you said, they might as well have painted a bullseye on it!

Oh, and the white on the head? Old Hen Mallard! :l
 

GoPackers

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All the banding record stated was that it was at least one year old as of the banding date in 2012. The band numbers were easy to read, and it didn't have much wear to it at all. I forwarded the picture to a Ducks Unlimited Biologist, and am awaiting to hear what they say, and will post it as soon as I receive the info.
 

purpleeagle

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shoot hen redheads all the time with that white on the head. It seems those are the ones that are a little bigger, possibly older. who knows...still tasted good.
 

GoPackers

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Your right purpleeagle, it was a lot bigger bird, even larger than the drakes we shot that day.
 

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