Saturday, November 19, 2016

Green-winged Teal

On 5 November, Erika and I walked along the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge. We parked at the Bass Ponds and turned around at the renovated pedestrian bridge that crosses the river. Along the way, we observed a flock of 30 Green-winged Teal. These ducks were relatively unwary and busily washed and preened.

This individual appears to me to be a first-year male. Males desert their mates while the females are incubating. Females then do all the incubation and any further parental care. In the winter, large flocks are common. These teal eat arthropods and marsh plant seeds (Johnson 1995).

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