Birds are definitely on the move in the area, with thousands of geese and other waterfowl moving through the area in the last couple of weeks. I haven’t had a chance to get out much, but did manage to get out for a couple of hours south of Sioux Falls, in Lincoln County. With all the snow melt, there’s certainly plenty of standing water, even without the lakes and ponds themselves still frozen. There were a number of places I found Snow Geese, Greater White-fronted Geese, Canada Geese, and the usual duck suspects hanging around the standing water and surrounding ag fields.
While watching one group of (mostly) Greater White-fronted Geese, I saw a strange-looking bird. The group flew just as I was starting to get binoculars on him, so I quickly grabbed the camera and tried to get a few shots. Not the greatest photo in the world, and it is from some distance, but it sure looks like the bird in the upper-right is a hybrid Snow and Greater White-fronted Goose. Much of the plumage and white base of the bill screams Greater White-fronted, but the extensive white, and even the “smile” patch on the bill are Snow Goose characteristics.
Not a hybrid I’ve seen before, but I guess not too surprising given how much these two species intermingle, at least during migration through the state.