Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling…

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Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling like the dickens underneath.

A Michael Caine quotation

Black Duck female with ducklings

Black Duck female with ducklings

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Black Duck

The American Black Duck (Anas rubripes) is a large dabbling duck.

The behaviour and voice are the same as for Mallard Drake.

Breeding: Their breeding habitat is lakes, ponds, rivers, marshes and other aquatic environments in eastern Canada and the Adirondacks in the U.S.

Identification Tips:
• Length: 16 inches Wingspan: 36 inches
• Large dabbling duck
• Pale gray-brown face
• Dark brown cap and eye line
• Dark brown breast, belly, back and upper wing
• Purple speculum without white borders
• Bright silvery wing linings
• Immature similar to adult

Adult male:
• Greenish-yellow bill
• Legs frequently bright red

Adult female:
• Greenish bill with black patches
• Legs generally orange

Similar species:
Female, immature and eclipse male Mallards are much paler, with no contrast between head and body. Hybrid Mallard x Black Ducks are often seen and usually have traces of the mallard plumage, with bluer speculum usually bordered with white on one or both edges. Mottled Duck is similar.

This species is partially migratory and many winter in the east-central United States, especially coastal areas.

These birds feed by dabbling in shallow water, and grazing on land. They mainly eat plants, but also some mollusks and aquatic insects.

The Black Duck has long been valued as a game bird, being quite wary and fast on the wing. Although not of great concern, it is slowly declining due to habitat destruction.

 

 

Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling like the dickens underneath.

A Michael Caine quotation

 

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Be like a duck. Calm on the surface, but always paddling like the dickens underneath.

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