Common ShelduckOpen or Close
Scientific name : Tadorna tadorna
Family : Anatidae
L: 58 à 67 cm, E: 100 à 120 cm
The Shelduck is a species of bird belonging to the family Anatidae. Like other species of the genus Tadorna, it presents characteristics intermediate between those of geese (low sexual dimorphism between males and females, male participation in brood rearing) and those ducks (morphology, voice).
The male has a greenish black head, red bill with a similar color caroncule, a red breast band from which a dark ventral stripe, white wings with black scapulars and primary flight feathers (marked with a green mirror) and the rest of the body white. The female is duller and has no caroncule on beak, often more marked in black. Adults of both sexes have pink legs. Chicks are covered with dark brown and white blanket. Young people are distinguished from adults by coverts heavily marked with black brown, the absence of redhead breast band, face and throat white, pink beak and gray legs..
This bird live coastal wetlands (estuaries, mudflats, brackish or salt lakes) and continental. He also likes the herbaceous dunes, planted with oyas.
The common shelduck feed on the surface, walking in slime and swinging his beak sideways. It also feeds on water using different techniques: standing in puddles and shallow water, swimming or swinging the tail up in deep water.
The shelduck installs its nest in an old terrier of rabbit or fox, in a crimped recess in an embankment or even in a wall hole. Exceptionally, it can be placed directly on the floor in the grassy vegetation. This is a simple depression filled with down. From April to June, the female lays eight to ten eggs whose incubation period is 29-31 days. Ducklings, nidifugous as with most ducks. Adults include youth in nursery under the supervision of one or more adults.