Garganey teal

Garganey Teal

Scientific Classification

Common Name
garganey teal, cricket teal, summer teal
Genus Species
Spatula (duck) querquedula (kind of duck)

Fast Facts

Garganey teal drakes have a head with a blackish-brown top portion, a white blaze extending from above the eye to the back of the neck and brownish red on the rest of the head except for a black chin. The breast and back are brown barred with white and the belly white. The bill is dark gray and the legs a blue-gray. Hens are much duller in color when compared to the males.
Approximately 35 cm (14 in.)
316 to 502 g (11 to 18 oz)
During the spring and summer, their diet consists of mollusks, aquatic insects, and their larvae, crustaceans, worms, leeches, young and spawn of frogs, and small fish. Seeds, roots, tubers, stems, leaves and buds from sedge, grass and other aquatic plants are also important at this time. During the non-breeding season, the birds are mainly vegetarian, with a diet dominated by the seeds of pondweeds, sedges, wild rice, and grass.
Approximately 25 to 26 days
Clutch Size
7 to 8 eggs
Fledging Duration
6 weeks
Sexual Maturity
Approximately 1 to 2 years
Life Span
Averages 20 to 30 years
Garganey teals have an extremely large range and can be found across Europe, Central Africa, Central and Southeast Asia from India to Indonesia.
This species frequents small, shallow ponds and lakes with abundant floating, emergent and fringing vegetation, in grass dominated environments, like swampy meadows, flooded fields, shallow freshwater marshes.
The global population is estimated at 2,600,000 to 2,800,000 individuals. The European population is estimated at 352,000 to 524,000 pairs, which equates to 704,000 to 1,050,000 mature individuals. The overall population trend is decreasing, although some populations have unknown trends or are stable
IUCN: Least concern
CITES: Appendix III
USFWS:  Not listed

Fun Facts

Males are called drakes, females are hens, and young are ducklings.

Teals are good swimmers and divers. However, they rarely dive for food. Rather they dive to hide from predators.

Teals have one of the most elaborate mating dances of all duck species.

Ecology and Conservation

The Garganey teal is fairly common throughout its range.

The most significant threat to this species on its breeding grounds in Europe is habitat deterioration through the drainage and reclamation of wetlands. Additional threats to this species include the destruction of nests due to mowing, increased human disturbance, lead poisoning, and hunting.


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.

BirdLife International 2016. Spatula querquedula . The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T22680313A86016410. Downloaded on 12 March 2020.

Photo Credit: Garganey_Teal_(Anas_querquedula)_RWD3.jpg. Source: Wikimedia Commons. Image by: Dick Daniels, Year Created: 20 March 2010. Website: License: CC by SA 3.0.