Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Male American Black Duck or female Mallard?

  1. #1
    Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    70

    Default Male American Black Duck or female Mallard?

    Saw 2 male mallards next to 2 other brown ducks. Thought they might be female mallards at first but after taking a second look I thought they might be 2 male american black ducks as the bills are more yellow/green than orange (mallard) and have that little dark blotch at the tip, their body color in general looks a little darker than a female mallard too?
    Spotted October 17, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada.
    www.wildlifesightings.net
    Bird & Wildlife Sightings Citizen Science

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Norfolk, UK
    Posts
    343

    Default

    Hi!

    I think you're right with your reassessment that these are male American Black Ducks rather than female Mallards. You've picked up on one key feature already - the greenish-yellow (rather than rather unevenly patterned orange) bills. Also note the really sharp cut-off between the grey-brown of the throat and the rich dark brown of the breast; the pale grey around the shafts of the tertials; the fairly even blackness of what we can see of the uppertail coverts and rump. All of these point to American Black Duck. One easy-to-see feature that's always useful in distinguishing between the two species is whether there is any white in the outer tail - Mallard in all plumages always has some and Black Duck doesn't.

    So ... Black Ducks!


  3. #3
    Senior Member shearwater2002's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Leeds
    Posts
    119

    Default

    Are they both wearing red/orangish rings on their left legs?

  4. #4
    user
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Bedfordshire
    Posts
    203

    Default

    There is no question these are american black ducks. However as shearwater2002 pointed out, the birds seemed ringed toward the top of their legs (An orange ring) which would imply they are possibly escapees.

    Did you notice a ring on the ducks?

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Lincolnshire
    Posts
    389

    Default

    Guys, not sure these are going to be escapes in Canada. Looks like water playing tricks on the eyes.

  6. #6
    Senior Member shearwater2002's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Leeds
    Posts
    119

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Josh Jones View Post
    Guys, not sure these are going to be escapes in Canada. Looks like water playing tricks on the eyes.
    I was merely pointing out that they look ringed to me.....with around 13000 Black Ducks around Nova Scotia I wasn't questioning if they were escapes!!


    ...although.....as the birds appear to be photographed at close range...from above....they could be 'park' birds!!
    Last edited by shearwater2002; January 1st, 2012 at 12:02 PM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    2,410

    Default

    It's just water refraction playing tricks, no rings there.

  8. #8
    user
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Bedfordshire
    Posts
    203

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelF View Post
    It's just water refraction playing tricks, no rings there.
    It's very hard to tell for sure if there are rings on the birds, refraction would explain the situation.

    I was not saying they were escapees anyway, just pointing out if the birds were ringed it is possible they were escapees.

    And with so many A-B Ducks in Nova Scotia the likelihood would be the birds are completely feral and of no captive origin whatsoever.

    Conclusion: The Birds are WILD AMERICAN BLACK DUCKS!

Similar Threads

  1. American Coot or other type of duck?
    By junponline in forum Advanced Bird Identification Q&A
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: December 31st, 2011, 02:27 PM
  2. Black Throated Sunbird, Female Video
    By allthai in forum Photography, Digiscoping, DSLR and Video
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: December 19th, 2011, 10:12 PM
  3. Replies: 2
    Last Post: August 5th, 2010, 12:10 PM
  4. Black Redstart male or female?
    By Red-eyed Video in forum Advanced Bird Identification Q&A
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: January 9th, 2008, 10:43 PM
  5. Orange-headed male Mallard
    By Floyd Hayes in forum Mystery Photos
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: January 6th, 2008, 06:15 PM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •