This is my favorite Ring-Necked Duck, for a number of reasons. It's the first and only specimen I've seen since I got my camera, and I've been able to see this specific bird now on three separate occasions.
When I first saw this Duck, which I shall henceforth name and call Gary, he was oddly hanging out at the drainage pond at the barren Grenada Park in the middle of the summer in Phoenix. He was the only non-mallard on the pond, and I must confess I judged him to be a Lesser Scaup at the time.
Here is the picture taken in early August (All photos can be enlarged by clicking on them):
I appreciated Gary's bravery at the time, as I think temperatures hit 111 degrees that day and be he Scaup or Ring-Neck, he was way, way farther south than either species' normal summer range.
A week later I saw Gary again at Grenada Park. Again he was the only non-Mallard and non-Coot on the pond, and he looked much the same.
On October 2nd I returned to Grenada Park hoping to see some migratory ducks. While I was disappointed in that pursuit, I had a pleasant and surprising reunion with Gary.