We have Hooded Mergansers year round. And although this water bird is not as common as the mallard, there are ample opportunities to see them. Yet, only once before have I seen one stand on a solid surface: swim or fly, yes; stand, no.
The issue is that unlike the mallard, which is a dabbling duck, the hoodie is a diver. So, its legs are set far back on its body for underwater propulsion and this makes it clumsy on land.
Mallards like to hang out on the ramp of a dock, because dogs can only approach from one direction and the birds have time to escape. The comforting presence of a mallard couple has clearly served as a lure for the Hooded Merganser couple.
A Hooded Merganser couple stand together.