That much zoom made the patterns in her feathers very clear. At a distance, through the binocs, she would normally look like a brown duck with some shading. Here, her patterning is clear and now I understand why the female gadwall is described as looking like a female mallard only smaller and with white secondaries instead of blue.
Next up was a loud red-wing blackbird perched most of the way across the pond. I'm still figuring out the camera and I'm not sure why the back of the blackbird is purple but the camera was very consistent about this as I saw later with other shots of the mallard. He's black, like a crow not purple.
Other local birders are reporting warblers and shorebirds migrating through so I'm hoping next week's trip will give me some more camera practice with more birds. For now, it was nice to have the artistic exercise of seeing all the textures in play in an ordinary scene.