It is always worth scrutinizing the resident population of Canada Goose for anything different. Today there was a Cackling Goose feeding along-side the residents. Hundreds of these northern Cacklers are seen off Tofino in the fall and occasionally one or two will refuel or even winter here. Though similar in looks to the Canada, these Cackling Geese which been recently split from a subspecies of Canada Goose to a full species, they are much smaller with a rounder head, stubbier bill and shorter neck. There are four subspecies of Cackling Goose, this being minima, darker and the smallest of the subspecies and lacking the prominent white neck ring. This Cackling Goose (Minima) breeds in southwest Alaska.
Silly o'clock and a drive to Summerset + a 2 1/2 hour watch at Ham Wall RSPB Reserve produced good looks at my first British P ied-billed Grebe. We turned up just after eight and just in time to miss this North American mega by minutes! Little Grebes kept us on our toes but we had to wait it out until about 10:40 am when it appeared from the corner where it had disappeared. There was a nice crowd here, all remaining hopeful and humorous during this very cold vigil. This little beauty made a b-line to open water, affording all great views. Bonus bird at this site was a Great White Egret .