Southern pochard

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Southern pochard
Southern Pochard (Netta erythrophthalma) RWD1.jpg
Male southern pochard
Netta erythrophthalma Germany01.jpg
Female southern pochard
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Anseriformes
Family: Anatidae
Genus: Netta
N. erythrophthalma
Binomial name
Netta erythrophthalma
(Wied, 1833)

Anas erythrophthalma Wied-Neuwied, 1833
Metopiana erythropthalma (Wied-Neuwied, 1833)

The southern pochard (Netta erythrophthalma) is a species of duck, and a member of the genus Netta. There are two subspecies, the South American (southern) pochard N. e. erythrophthalma (Wied-Neuwied, 1833) and the African (southern) pochard N. e. brunnea (Eyton, 1838).

The South American pochard has a fragmented range and is found from Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and Argentina to Chile. Here it occurs in a wide variety of shallow fresh waters with submerged vegetation, from the lowlands up to 3,700 metres.

The African pochard occurs from the Cape to the Ethiopian highlands on water bodies with or without emergent vegetation. They are suspected to have been strong migrants in the past but the construction of numerous farm dams seems to allow them a more sedentary lifestyle. They reach highest concentrations in Africa's central plateaus and in the south-western winter rainfall region.


Two syntype specimens of Nyroca brunnea Eyton (Monogr. Anat., 1838, p.161., pl.23.), the African Southern Pochard, are held in the collections of National Museums Liverpool at World Museum, with accession numbers D832 (male adult) and D832a (female adult). The specimens were collected in South Africa and came to the Liverpool national collection via Thomas Campbell Eyton’s collection and the 13th Earl of Derby’s collection which was bequeathed to the city of Liverpool.

Nyroca brunnea


Southern pochards are sociable and gregarious. They have been seen in groups of up to 5,000.

Mating and nesting[edit]

The birds are solitary nesters, building nests out of leaves and stems on the banks of a river surrounded by vegetation.[2] The female southern pochard lays a clutch consisting of six to fifteen eggs. The female incubates the eggs for 20 to 28 days.[2] Once the eggs hatch, the mother leads them immediately to water.

Eating habits[edit]

The southern pochard eats mainly aquatic plants, which it finds when diving.[3] Also, the adults tend to feed on larvae, pupae, aquatic animals, and plant material.[4]


  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Netta erythrophthalma". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
  2. ^ a b "Netta erythrophthalma". Retrieved 23 October 2017.
  3. ^ "Pochard". Encyclopedia Britannica. Retrieved 23 October 2017.
  4. ^ "Southern pochards". Retrieved 24 October 2017.

External links[edit]