|female with young|
The redhead (Aythya americana) is a medium-sized diving duck, 37 cm (15 in) long with an 84 cm (33 in) wingspan.
The adult drake has a blue bill, a red head and neck, a black breast, and yellow eyes. The adult hen has a brown head and body and a darker bluish bill with a black tip. The drake's distinctive call, a mewing weee-ooooo, is given during courtship.
The breeding habitat is marshes and prairie potholes in western North America. Loss of nesting habitat has led to sharply declining populations. Hens regularly lay eggs in the nests of other redheads or other ducks, especially Canvasbacks. Redheads usually take new mates each year, starting to pair in late winter.
Following the breeding season, drakes go through a molt which leaves them flightless for almost a month. Before this happens, they leave their mates and move to large bodies of water, usually flying farther north.
Gastropods known as food of Aythya americana include: Acteocina canaliculata, Acteon punctostriatus, Anachis avara, Anachis obesa, Caecum nitidum, Calliostoma sp., Cerithidea pliculosa, Cerithium lutosum, Crepidula convexa, Diastoma varium, Melanella sp., Mitrella lunata, Nassarius acutus, Nassarius vibex, Natica sp., Neritina virginea, Odostomia trifida, Olivella minuta, Olivella watermani, Polinices sp., Pyramidellidae, Pyrgocythara plicosa, Rissoina catesbyana, Sayella livida, Turbonilla sp., Turbonilla interrupta and Vitrinella sp.
male in Puerto Rico
- BirdLife International (2012). "Aythya americana". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
- Michot T. C., Woodin M. C. & Nault A. J. (2008). "Food habits of redheads (Aythya americana) wintering in seagrass beds of coastal Louisiana and Texas, USA". Acta Zoologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricae 54 Suppl. 1): 239-250. PDF
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Redhead.|
|Wikispecies has information related to: Aythya americana|
- Redhead Species Account - Cornell Lab of Ornithology
- Redhead - Aythya americana - USGS Patuxent Bird Identification InfoCenter
- Redhead videos, photos, and sounds at the Internet Bird Collection
- Sound, Sound metadata Macaulay Library, Cornell Lab of Ornithology
- Redhead photo gallery at VIREO (Drexel University)