Ferruginous Duck

Aythya nyroca

 The picture shows a Ferruginous Duck swimming towards the camera. IUCN Red List endangerment category: Near threatened
  • Family
    Ducks (Anatidae)
  • Weight
    650 – 740 g
  • Habitat
    Shallow lakes

Returning to the wild

The ferruginous duck is a chestnut-coloured diving duck. Its preferred habit is shallow lakes with siltation areas. Thanks to numerous reintroductions from German zoos, the ferruginous duck population in Germany is growing steadily. Unlike other diving duck species, ferruginous ducks can only be found in small groups outside of the breeding season.

A flying Ferruginous Duck

Foraging in water

Ferruginous ducks feed on aquatic plants, snails, insect larvae, small crustaceans and tadpoles. However, unlike other diving ducks, the majority of their diet is plant-based. The bird mainly forages for food by diving. Ferruginous ducks typically spend 30-60 seconds underwater on each dive.

Ferruginous ducks have tactile cells on their beaks that help them to find food in murky water.