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What's wrong with the neck of this Common Scoter?

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Old Yesterday, 14:51   #1
andreadawn
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What's wrong with the neck of this Common Scoter?

This bird turned up on the lagoons at one of my local reserves in the south west corner of Cumbria recently. Common Scoters are very common locally on the sea at this time of year but are rarely seen on land.

At first sight I thought this individual had something wrapped around its neck. Unfortunately with the strong wind making my eyes water constantly I couldn't get a clear enough view through my scope to see what it was.

Having made a few extreme enlargements from my photos though, it looks more like it simply has no feathers on its neck, except perhaps for the black diagonal stripe. It had an identical stripe the other side.

If that's the case, what might be going on? Something gone wrong with its moult perhaps? Maybe disease, or an infestation of parasites affecting feather growth in that area? Or perhaps it looks to other people that there is indeed something wrapped round its neck?

Whilst I didn't see it flying, it did spend a lot of time diving with a group of Scaup and had some success with finding food items. However, after a while it left the water and spent some time preening on the grass before settling down to rest.
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Old Yesterday, 15:22   #2
dantheman
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Possibility of a bird caught by a raptor, partially plucked, prior to escaping another possibility? (There was a particularly gruesome Common Gull photographed some years ago)
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Old Yesterday, 18:16   #3
KC Foggin
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I wonder if could have got caught up in some fishing line? If so, I'm glad it's free and on its own.
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Old Today, 07:32   #4
Euan Buchan
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Does look like a fishing line but hard to tell.
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