Bitter cold; shy ducks are named.

The sun is almost at 45° in the sky at noon and yet the cold persists. I discovered this phenomenon along the banks of the Humber where some branches dangling in the (receding yet rough) water have picked up ice in the same way that candlemakers make candles.

There's got to be a name for these - dingicles?

There’s got to be a name for these – dingicles?

Beautiful specimens on the old bridge abutment.

Beautiful specimens on the old bridge abutment.

 

I managed to get my closest yet to the mystery ducks and have finally recognized them thanks to Professor Google.

Common Mergansers.

Two males and a female (not so) Common Mergansers.

They are Common Mergansers – a name that I don’t remember hearing before – but that could be me.

These shy ducks don't like humans.

These shy ducks didn’t like my presence and moved upriver.

Nesting in tree cavities, Common Mergansers, found all over North America dive to feed on fish and other aquatic animals. They make a nice change from the usual Mallard ducks who are considerably tamer.

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