Today, nesting fulvous whistling ducks are abundant in rice-growing, freshwater wetland areas of south Florida. The Fulvous Whistling-Duck is a mix of rich caramel-brown and black, a long-legged and long-necked creature found in warm freshwater marshes across the Americas, Africa, and Asia. The male and female look alike with a tawny brown head, chest and belly and darker brown wings and back. The juvenile has paler underparts, and appears generally duller, especially on the flanks. Ducklings may also eat a few insects. The nest, built from plant material and unlined, is placed among dense vegetation or in a tree hole. [25], Breeding coincides with the availability of water. Before taking off in alarm, they often shake their head sideways. Juvenile fulvous whistling ducks are very like young lesser whistling ducks, but the crown colour is still a distinction. The following are the daily duck limits for the 2020-21 season: General Duck – 6, including no more than 2 mallards (of which only 1 can be female), 4 scoters, 4 eiders, 4 long-tailed ducks, 3 wood ducks, 2 redheads, 2 black ducks, 2 canvasbacks, 1 pintail, 1 mottled duck (Florida duck) and 1 fulvous whistling-duck. Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission • Farris Bryant Building [19] Birds are sexually mature after one year, and the maximum known age is 6.5 years. [26] Fulvous whistling ducks show lifelong monogamy; the courtship display is limited to some mutual head-dipping before mating and a short dance after copulation in which the birds raise their bodies side by side while treading water. A lanky bird of shallow wetlands, widespread in the tropics of Africa, Asia, and the Americas. [4] The fulvous whistling duck forms a superspecies with the wandering whistling duck. In flight, the wings are brown above and black below, with no white markings, and a white crescent on the rump contrasts with the black tail. Fulvous whistling ducks are filter-feeders that eat rice and other water plants. The nest, 19–26 cm (7.5–10.2 in) across, is made from plant leaves and stems and has little or no soft lining. [1] This may be an underestimate since regional assessments suggest 1 million birds in the Americas, 1.1 million in Africa and at least 20,000 in South Asia for a grand total of 2.12 million ducks around the world. In flight, the beating wings produce a dull sound. [2] They were an early split from the main duck lineage,[3] and were predominant in the Late Miocene before the subsequent extensive radiation of more modern forms in the Pliocene and later. It is found in a broad belt across sub-Saharan Africa and down the east of the continent to South Africa and Madagascar. They are whitish and on average measure 53.4 mm × 40.7 mm (2.10 in × 1.60 in) and weigh 50.4 g (1.78 oz). [16] Observations of the bird outside the nesting season, especially since the 1950s have been recorded in temperate regions as far north as the Mississippi River Basin, eastern Great Lakes region, and along the Pacific and Atlantic Coasts right up to southern Canada. When seen standing, fulvous whistling ducks look more goose-like, and actually, they are more closely related to geese than ducks. [5], In South Africa, a few records of hybridization with the white-faced whistling duck have been noted in the wild;[28][29] in most parts of southern Africa, the two species breed at different times, bicolor during the dry season (April to September) and viduata during the rains (October to March). [7][a] This led to the next available name proposed by French ornithologist Louis Jean Pierre Vieillot in 1816 from a Paraguayan specimen as Anas bicolor. Length ranges from 47 to 56 cm (19 to 22 in), body mass from 652 to 1,020 g (1.437 to 2.249 lb) and wingspan ranges from 76 to 94 cm (30 to 37 in). Internal helminth parasites include roundworms, tapeworms and flukes. However, the status of the two whistling duck species featured in the research is dubious since they are popular ornamental species, so their origin is unclear. [36], A species of bird in the family Anatidae, widespread in tropical wetlands, Scientific names are given in accordance with strict chronological priority, so Gmelin's name could not be used since it had previously allocated to another species. [34] In Africa, it bred on the Cape Peninsula between 1940 and the 1960s. [19] The population appears to be declining, but the decrease is not rapid enough to trigger the vulnerability criteria for extinction. [5], The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) estimates the population of the fulvous whistling duck to be from 1.3 to 1.5 million individuals around the world. Only one duck had no mites or lice. Copyright 1999 - 2020 State of Florida. Pesticides used on rice fields may also have an adverse impact,[5] causing liver and breast muscle damage even at sub-lethal levels. It undertakes seasonal movementsin response to the availability of water and food. [20] The calls of males and females show differences in structure and an acoustic analysis on 59 captive birds demonstrated 100% accuracy in sexing when compared with molecular methods. [22], Several arthropod parasites have been recorded on this duck, including chewing mites of the families Philopteridae and Menoponidae,[23][24] feather mites and skin mites. The fulvous whistling duck feeds in wetlands by day or night on seeds and other parts of plants. [20] Eggs are laid at roughly 24- to 36-hour intervals, starting before the nest is complete, resulting in some losses from the clutch. [19], These are noisy birds with a clear whistling kee-wee-ooo call given on the ground or in flight, frequently heard at night. [19], Pairs may breed alone or in loose groups. [10] The genus name is derived from the Ancient Greek dendron, "tree", and Latin cygnus, "swan",[11] and bicolor is Latin for "two-coloured". [17][18] All plumages are fairly similar, but the female is slightly smaller and duller-plumaged than the male. It has no recognised subspecies, although the birds in northern Mexico and the southern US have in the past been assigned to D. b. helva,[5] described as having paler and brighter underparts and a lighter crown than D. b. [5], This species is usually found in small groups, but substantial flocks can form at favoured sites. 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