Anas discors
(Blue-winged Teal)


Order: Anseriformes
Order Description: Swans, Geese, Ducks
Family: Anatidae
Family Description: Swans, Geese and Ducks

Physical Description:
Size: 14.5-16" (37-41 cm). Teal are small-bodied dabbling ducks. Males have a bluish-gray head with a large white crescent before the eye. Body mottled brown above, pinkish with black spots below. Females mottled buffClick word for definition to brown. Both sexes have a large blue patch on the forewing. When on the water, this blue patch can sometimes be seen as a bluish stripe along the side of the body.

Similar Species- Female Blue-winged Teal are almost indistinguishable from female Cinnamon Teal and Green-winged Teal. Female Northern Shovelers have a broader bill and are much larger.

Song:
Call of the male is a high-pitched, single note peep. Females have a high quack.

Distribution:
Breeds from southern Canada, south to southern California, New Mexico, central Texas, Louisiana, and North Carolina. Winters from southern U.S., south to northern South America.

Habitat:
Found on marshes, ponds, sloughs, lakes and sluggish streams. During migration and when not breeding, found in both freshwater and brackishClick word for definition situations (prefers freshwater marshes, ponds, and sloughs, but can also be found in river pools, salt ponds, and estuaries). In Idaho, occupies low- elevation wetlands, but may be seen on higher-elevation lakes during fall migration.

Diet:
Feeds on vegetative parts of aquatic plants (algae, duckweeds, pondweeds, etc.), as well as seeds (sedges, pondweeds, grasses, etc.). Also feeds on large amounts of aquatic invertebrates.

Ecology:
Nests on dry land near water. Usually forms flocksClick word for definition when not breeding. May feed with other dabbling ducks, coots, and shorebirds. Hybridizes occasionally with Cinnamon Teal.

Reproduction:
Female incubatesClick word for definition 6-15 eggs (usually 9-11), for 23-27 days. Nestlings are precocialClick word for definition, and tended by female. First flight of young occurs 35-44 days after hatching.

Conservation:
Element Code: ABNJB10130
Status: Game species
Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S5
National Rank: N5B,N5N

Important State References:
No references are available at this time.


Design by Ean Harker©1999, 2000.
Written by Jason Karl, 2000.