The most common duck in our country and in the other regions of the planet where it evolves is the Mallard duck. Its scientific name is the Anas Platyrhynchos. It is found as well in the open countryside on isolated ponds and lakes as in the city in urban parks. The mallard is a dabbling duck, because it lives on all kinds of water bodies.
Physiognomy of the mallard duck
The adult mallard duck has gray plumage. The upper parts of the back are dark gray. The rump and part of the wings are black. The upperwing in males is gray and mirror blue. Its breast is a purple brown and the rest white to brown. The iridescent blue green head has a white collar. Its beak is yellow up to green and its webbed legs are orange. The female mallard is smaller than the male and its plumage is less vivid than that of the male, but remains brown with black borders. Its beak is gray.
The adult mallard duck ranges from 50 cm to 65 cm in length. Its wingspan in flight ranges from 75 cm to 100 cm. It weighs between 750 g and 1,600 kg.
Chants and calls of the mallard
In the mallard, the female is very noisy. The male utters a few nasal notes while the female croak.
Mallards are found in all wetlands where they can find fresh, brackish, or salt water to swim and feed on. He does not need deep water to be able to hide. It is very common in city parks where there are ponds. When the breeding season is over, it prefers bays, estuaries and coasts with low elevation.
Land areas where the mallard is found
The mallard is a duck that can be found in the northern hemisphere of the planet except in deserts, tundra or mountains that are too high. Mallards have also been introduced to New Zealand and Australia. Thus, these birds can migrate from north to south after breeding, but if they have enough food there, they remain sedentary.
The mallard dabbling. He eats everything and they say he is omnivorous. He dives head first into the water and rocks his body with the help of his tail. In the water, it finds small fish, amphibians and invertebrates as well as aquatic vegetation. When food is scarce, the mallard begins to graze the ground. This duck is sociable with its congeners and lives in large groups after the mating and breeding season.
Mallard ducks pair up in late fall. To charm the female, the male displays as soon as spring arrives. Just after the laying, the couple cut their ties and the ducks re-form a new couple. The partners are working together towards a breeding area to reproduce when they arrive. The female starts swimming, making circles around the males, flattening her body. The male inflates his plumage and stretches the body above the water. It then utters a whistle and a growl, then begins its display, head and tail raised towards the female it chooses and mates with her. Once the female has laid eggs, she assumes alone all that relates to nestingnot.
Mallard breeding season
The mallard breeds between february and june in our country, but varies depending on the geographical area where it is located. The nest is found on the ground hidden in cavities, trees or vegetation. It forms a depression made with herbs and its interior is lined with down and feathers. The female lays 4 to 18 eggs there and the incubation lasts four weeks. The chicks can abandon the nest very quickly once they are born. After 48 hours, they follow their mother for about two months. Their sexual maturity is at the age of one year. The female makes one clutch per year unless a clutch is lost, then she can lay another.
The mallard is a widespread species and well adapted to humans. The population is not threatened, although we can see that its habitat is increasingly restricted, because there are fewer wetlands on the planet.