The American Black Duck is more brown than black. It was named as such because it appears black from a distance. We spied these ducks recently, camouflaging themselves surprisingly well among the lilypads, which still had a bloom or two remaining. See how many ducks you can spot in the two photos. (Click the photo to see it larger.)

These ducks spend their summers all over the eastern half of Canada and New England, with a few all the way over here in the midwest. Like many birds, these ducks are now migrating south to the eastern half of the US for the winter.

Their numbers have been declining steadily since the 1950s. reports that mallards’ upward-rising numbers may possibly be causing this, or possibly interbreeding and/or competition between the two closely-related species.