Photo by cottonmanifesto, who rejected it, but I grabbed it out of the discard pile because I needed it for the project. Location: Revere Beach.
Urban species #331: White-winged scoter Melanitta fusca
The white-winged scoter is a large (as heavy as a red-tailed hawk), mostly ocean-going duck, found near Boston from late fall to early spring. In the summer it breeds in Alaska and western Canada, near inland ponds and lakes. In the winter it comes south of relatively warmer climes, where food may be more abundant. It dives in the ocean to catch small fish and invertebrates. Populations of white-winged scoters may be in decline, in part due to increased numbers of nest predators such as crows and gulls. Ironically, the small population of white-winged scoters on the great lakes may be increasing, because the invasive zebra mussel is providing a rich food source for them.