|Beautiful Mandarin Ducks (鴛鴦) in Palo Alto
in San Francisco Bay Area
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Wow! What a beautiful Mandarin duck (鴛鴦)! It is spectacular. Mandarin ducks have long been
revered in China, Japan and Korea.
We visited Palo Alto Junior Museum and Zoo located at 1451 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto, California 94301 in
San Francisco Bay Area in the afternoon of Sunday, November 27, 2016 to enjoy watching and taking
pictures of these magnificent Mandarin ducks.
Winter and spring seasons are the best seasons to see Mandarin ducks because the male Mandarin
ducks are in their most spectacular breeding courtship plumage to attract females. It is fascinating to
watch them. (In summer and fall seasons, the Mandarin ducks are not so colorful.)
It is hard to express the wonderful feelings that these beautiful creatures give me.
A young man drained the water in the duck pond and was cleaning the duck pond on Sunday
November 27, 2016 such that these Mandarin ducks were not on the water. Therefore, we missed the
opportunity to see these amazing Mandarin ducks floating on the duck pond and playing in the water
Some top views of the beautiful Mandarin ducks.
Amazing golden pheasant near the duck pond in Palo Alto Junior Museum and Zoo.
I took a 2-minute movie clip of these beautiful Mandarin ducks in action and upload the movie clip to the
YouTube website at:
額和頭頂中央翠綠色，並具金屬光澤， 頸側具長矛形的輝栗色領羽， 下胸至尾下覆羽乳
It is just thrilling to watch.
It is a joy to watching such amazingly beautiful bird.
It is a wonderful sight!
Spreading Its Wings.
After visiting Palo Alto Junior Museum and Zoo, we drove to Shoreline Park and Lake for bird watching in
Mountain View near Google Office Buildings Complex and near San Francisco Bay. Shoreline Park and Lake is
located at 3160 N Shoreline Blvd, Mountain View, CA 94043.
Last time I visited the Shoreline Park and Lake was in January 2016. The weather in January was cold such
that nobody was boating on the Shoreline Lake. With no people on this lake, there were lots of interesting bird
activities on Shoreline Lake as shown on my web page at:
But this time, we came on November 27, 2016 when the weather was not very cold yet and there were lots of
people enjoying boating on the lake. With lots of people boating activities on the lake, there were very few birds
on the lake for us to watch.
So, we walked along a hiking trail to go north to the nearby Shoreline Slough which is between Shoreline Lake
and San Francisco Bay. We were very happy to see many birds on Shoreline Slough as shown in these few
Map: Click here for interactive Google Map showing location of Shoreline Slough relative to Shoreline Lake
A pair of northern shoveler on Shoreline Slough.
May be a grebe on Shoreline Slough.
Feeding frenzy of a group of cormorants on water surface swimming very fast forward and diving periodically
into water, probably chasing and catching a school of fish moving fast in the water. Another flock of white
colored birds (might be gulls or terns) was flying above and following the group of cormorants on the water
surface, and diving periodically from air down to water surface, probably to catch fish.
I took a 4-minutes movie clip of such feeding frenzy of the group of cormorants and the group of white birds
and uploaded the movie clip to YouTube at the following website:
The feeding frenzy of these two groups of fishing birds was very far away, hundreds of yards away, from us
on the hiking trail on the shore. I had to use the 65X optical zoom of my compact super-zoom camera to
zoom in to see more clearly and to take the movie recording.
In the movie clip of feeding frenzy listed above, notice that at the time of 2:46 (2 minute and 46 second), a
large pelican showed up on the water surface with two big wings raised above water at the upper right corner
of movie frames. This means that this large pelican just dived from mid-air down to the water surface to catch
Last time in January 2016, we saw several large pelicans hovering in the air and then dived from mid-air down
to Shoreline Lake to catch fish as shown on my movie clip on YouTube website at:
Two frames of movie clip at the time of 2:46 of feeding frenzy shown above. Notice the two big wings on the
water surface with splashing water at the upper right corner of these two movie frames.