It is possible that the duck species is one of the largest in the world of birds. Still, it’s good to learn about which ones exist, right? Today, for example, you will learn something about Blue-billed Duck.
Where does this bird live?
It is known by the scientific name of oxyura australis, a species of anseriform bird of the anatidae family. It is mainly distributed in Australia and Tasmania. In the case of Australia, its distribution is limited to the Murray and Darlingen river basins.
Unlike other duck species, it does not usually get very close to coastal areas, so its contact with humans is quite limited. There’s no record of him migrating during the winter.
Very easy to recognize
Although it is true that by its appearance it could be confused with other duck species, the truth is that it is easy to differentiate. It measures between 30-35 cm and can weigh between 500 and 1300 grams. There is no sexual dimorphism, but the female is usually a little heavier than the male.
It is characterized because its whole body is covered by a black plumage with a slight reddish-brown tone. Its beak is bluish in colour and may appear to be white in colour depending on the light. The tail feathers are usually raised when swimming, giving the appearance of a bangs.
How does it behave in freedom?
Generally, members of the antidae species spend some time in the water and can then surface. But in the case of the members of the Malvasia species, they spend most of their lives in water. They are not very good walkers nor do they know how to get their food from the ground.
That is why they are always in the water, where they get their food from. It mainly consumes aquatic plants and small invertebrates, such as crustaceans, insects and molluscs. It is not as good a swimmer as the dumplings, but it can submerge itself to get its food.
The breeding season will depend on the area in which it is found. The female will usually be in charge of building the nest in a marsh near the coast, but at a fairly deep depth. The laying can be from three to twelve eggs. The incubation period usually lasts about 28 days. All chicks are born at the same time.
As a general rule, chicks start swimming from their first day of life. Although during their first two weeks they will be fed by the mother, regurgitating a mixture of aquatic plants, insects and crustaceans. After this time, the chicks will already know how to submerge themselves in the water to get their own food. They take two to three months to leave the nest.