American Wigeon

American Wigeon

Birds

SCIENTIFIC CLASSIFICATION

COMMON NAME: American wigeon, baldpate
KINGDOM: Animalia
PHYLUM: Chordata
CLASS: Aves
ORDER: Anseriformes
FAMILY: Anatidae
GENUS SPECIES: Anas (duck) americana (America)

FAST FACTS

DESCRIPTION: American wigeons are medium-sized ducks.  They have a white crown with a green post-ocular stripe and gray on their lower face and neck.  The breast and flanks are rusty and the back is dark brown. American wigeons also have a white patch on the rear portion of the flanks and black under the tail coverts
SIZE: Reaches lengths of approximately 35cm (14 in.); wingspan 87cm (34 in.)
WEIGHT: Approximately 1.01 kg (2.25 lb.)
DIET: Seeds, leaves, stems, buds of pondweeds, widgeon grass, sedges, rice, snails, beetles, and crickets
INCUBATION: Approximately 22-24 days
CLUTCH SIZE 9-11 eggs
FLEDGING DURATION 45-48 days
SEXUAL MATURITY: About 1 year
LIFE SPAN: Averages 9-10 years
RANGE: Found in northern and central North America; winters in coastal and southern North America and Central America
HABITAT: Marshes and ponds
POPULATION: GLOBAL Unknown
STATUS: IUCN Not listed
CITES Not listed
USFWS Not listed

FUN FACTS

1. Wigeons are known to let other ducks gather food for them then steal it! They also tend to follow other migrating ducks in order to get food!
2. Wigeons are diving ducks, not dabbling ducks, and will completely submerge themselves to chase food.
3. These ducks alert their fellow ducks of danger by alarm quacks and rattling their wings.

ECOLOGY AND CONSERVATION

These birds are a food source for predators and also help maintain plant growth.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Austin, G. Birds of the World. New York. Golden Press, Inc., 1961.

Gotch, A.F. Birds - Their Latin Names Explained. UK. Blandford Books Ltd., 1981.

Johnsgard, P. Ducks, Geese, and Swans of the World. Lincoln. Univ. Of Neb. Press, 1978.

Scott, P. A Coloured Key of the Wildfowl of the World. Slimbridge, England. The Wildfowl Trust. 1988.

Todd, F.S. Natural History of Waterfowl. San Diego, Ca. Ibis Publishing Co., 1996.