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Every cloud has a silver lining

Every cloud has a silver lining

When I went away for my trip to South-America there were some birds I really wanted to see. One of those was the Torrent Duck. Really the coolest duck in the world. The male as well as the female is really beautiful and on top of that they both make a living by swimming up fast streaming currents. Amazing how they can keep doing that the whole day long. Finding Torrent Ducks turned out to be a bit harder than I thought.

First I was in Torres del Paine, they were supposed to be there. Then two weeks in the Andes, but also there no sign of any Torrent Ducks. So after that I wasn’t really counting on seeing them anymore. When we were high up in the Andes looking for an Andean Mountain Cat we suddenly got a flat tire. Because of that we had to drive al the way back. On the way back I suddenly saw a little duck swimming in a stream down the road! We quickly stopped and it was a female Torrent Duck! When I had walked down I couldn’t find them anywhere however. Of course I memorised the place. Sadly we got more bad luck down the road when also our spare tire went flat. Thanks to the local police with their satellite phone we were able to reach the rental company. We had to wait for it a whole afternoon, but finally just before the night a small truck arrived…

We were two days busy with arranging a new car and getting back, but finally we were at 4000 meters again. Now for those ducks! I quick scan from the road wasn’t successful. So the next morning I went out to check the whole stream by foot. After about one and a half hour looking I started to feel like it wasn’t going to happen for me. Then suddenly a little duck crosses the stream! There is no way that was something else… Yes, the female Torrent Duck again! Short after that I also see the male.

The trick for good pictures is to lie down upstream. After a while and sometimes after some hesitation the ducks will swim upstream past me. Then the whole game begins anew. What a couple of awesome ducks! We had bad luck with the tire but otherwise we wouldn’t have seen these nice Torrent Ducks!


It turned out that all the way at the end of my trip I would also see them on the road to Machu Picchu, but it was nice to have pocketed them earlier!


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