A diving duck, it is usually found on open water of rivers and lakes. The common goldeneye, like the Barrow's goldeneye, is named for its brilliant yellow iris. The Common Goldeneye on the other hand, is a much more common duck. The common goldeneye (Bucephala clangula) is a medium-sized sea duck of the genus Bucephala, the goldeneyes.Its closest relative is the similar Barrow's goldeneye. In the summer, they prefer alkaline wetlands with open water, little emergent vegetation, high invertebrate populations, and an absence of fish. The male Common Goldeneye adds a bright note to winter days with its radiant amber eye, glistening green-black head, and crisp black-and-white body and wings. Interactive eBird map: Click here for an interactive eBird map of Common Goldeneye sightings. Noppadol Paothong. Some wintering species, such as Common Goldeneye, may not be present in full numbers until December, and some rare northern gulls may not show up until then. I couldn't believe it when I saw this. Common usually has a dark bill with a small yellow patch near the tip, but rarely can have an entirely dull yellowish bill like Barrow’s. Common goldeneyes fly in small compact clusters, with their wings making a distinctive whistle at every wing beat. Females can be very difficult. Very similar to Barrow’s Goldeneye. Males are easiest: Common has less black on the back, lacks a dark spur on the side, and has a circular (not crescent-shaped) white patch on the face. Sandhill Crane migration has been getting later in recent years, with the birds not moving out of staging areas northwest of Ohio until forced out by weather, so their peak passage through Ohio is now often in December. Family: Anatidae (ducks, geese, swans) in the order Anseriformes. In coming months, this duck will provide biologists with a wealth of information about the migration ecology of Barrow’s Goldeneyes. It was like a duckling daycare. The common goldeneye (Bucephala clangula) in flight during migration from the north - Buy this stock photo and explore similar images at Adobe Stock Sales: 800-685-3602 Sell Male common goldeneyes have blackish iridescent green heads with a white circular patch between the eye and the base of the bill. The female has a chocolate brown head with the same bright eye that gives this species its name. The common goldeneye is a common migrant and winter resident in Missouri. These distinctively shaped, large-headed ducks dive for their food, eating mostly aquatic invertebrates and fish. There was only one mother looking after all these ducklings. Description: Common goldeneyes have compact bodies with large heads, relatively small, narrow bills, and short tails. It is also one of the last of the diver ducks to migrate south each fall and can normally be found late season on the rivers and larger bodies of water that stay open till the very end of the hunting season. It can be found on many large, deep bodies of water as well as along many rivers and streams and on both coasts.