African black duck
|African black duck|
The African black duck (Anas sparsa) is a species of duck of the genus Anas. It is genetically closest to the mallard group, but shows some peculiarities in its behavior and (as far as they can be discerned) plumage; it is accordingly placed in the subgenus Melananas pending further research.
The African black duck is an entirely black duck with white marks on its back. It lives in central and southern Africa. It is also known as the black river duck, or (A. s. leucostigma) West African black duck or Ethiopian black duck. It is a medium-sized duck and is similar in size but when seen in pairs the male is noticeably bigger.
Behavior and reproduction
It is a very shy and territorial duck. It is usually seen in pairs or small flocks. It breeds throughout the year in different areas. Incubation is about 30 days by the mother and the fledgling period is 86 days and only the mother takes care of the young. Their egg quantity ranges from 4 to 8 eggs.
Though it likes to stay in rivers and streams during the day it prefers large open waters during the night. This duck likes water in the wooded hills of Africa and hides its nest near running water. Also the African black duck makes its cup shaped nest of driftwood and matted grass. Though it builds its nest near running water it is always above flood level and on the ground.
- BirdLife International (2012). "Anas sparsa". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
- Johnson, Kevin P. & Sorenson, Michael D. (1999). "Phylogeny and biogeography of dabbling ducks (genus Anas): a comparison of molecular and morphological evidence" (PDF). Auk 116 (3): 792–805. doi:10.2307/4089339.
- Johnson, Kevin P. McKinney, Frank; Wilson, Robert & Sorenson, Michael D. (2000). "The evolution of postcopulatory displays in dabbling ducks (Anatini): a phylogenetic perspective" (PDF). Animal Behaviour 59 (5): 953–963. doi:10.1006/anbe.1999.1399. PMID 10860522.
- Photos of the African black duck hosted by the Feather Site.
- Videos of the African black duck hosted by the Internet Bird Collection.
- Species text in The Atlas of Southern African Birds.
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