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Australian Wildlife

  Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)





Mallard | Anas platyrhynchos photo
Male Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)

Image by Jörg Hempel - Some rights reserved.    (view image details)

Mallard | Anas platyrhynchos photo
Male Mallard

Image by Anton Holmquist - Some rights reserved.    (view image details)

Mallard | Anas platyrhynchos photo
Mallard female

Image by Andreas Trepte - Some rights reserved.    (view image details)

Mallard | Anas platyrhynchos photo
female Mallard duck

Image by Jan Mehlich - Some rights reserved.    (view image details)



MALLARD FACTS

Description
The Mallard is a large introduced duck. The male has a grey brown back, chestnut brown breast and green head with narrow white neck band. The underside is light grey. The black tails has white outer feathers. The bill is greenish yellow with a black tip. Outside the breeding season, males are less colourful with brown face, less green on the head, and mottled brown and white body and wings. The female is brown streaked with white and lighter brown. she has a dark eye line and dark streak on top of the head. young birds are similar in appearance to females. Females are similar to the native Pacific Black Duck.

Size
50cm - 70 cm

Habitat
wetlands, grassland, farmland, lakes, marshes, streams, sheltered estuaries

Food
aquatic vegetation, insects, aquatic invertebrates, seeds

Breeding
The Mallard nest is a depression in the ground lined with grass and down. Lays up to 12 cream coloured or pale greenish eggs.

Range
The Mallard is found in North America, Europe and Asia. It was introduced to Australia in the mid nineteenth century and has increased its range across south east of Australia from central coast to Queensland, eastern New south Wales, Victoria, Tasmania, south east parts of South Australia. It is also found in south west corner of Western Australia.



Classification
Class:Aves
Order:Anseriformes
Family:Anatidae
Genus:Anas
Species:platyrhynchos
Common Name:Mallard

Relatives in same Genus
  Northern Pintail (A. acuta)
  Chestnut Teal (A. castanea)
  Northern Shoveler (A. clypeata)
  Grey Teal (A. gracilis)
  Garganey (A. querquedula)
  Australasian Shoveler (A. rhynchotis)
  Pacific Black Duck (A. superciliosa)