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Australasian Shoveler

(Anas rhynchotis)
Alternate name(s): "Australian Shoveler", "Blue-winged Shoveler", "Southern Shoveler", "Spoonbill-duck", "Stinker"
Aboriginal name(s): "bardoongooba" (WA); "thowla"

Size: 45-54 cm

Similar species

Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Australasian Shoveler at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range


Click here for sighting information


Race "rhynchotis"



Frontal view of a male Australasian Shoveler; note the characteristic broad bill for filter-feeding
[Warialda, NSW, April 2014]

Lateral view of a male Australasian Shoveler
[Narrabri Lake, NSW, July 2010]

Close-up lateral view of a male Australasian Shoveler resting in shallow water; note the charactristic orange legs (photo courtesy of J. Greaves)
[Lake Claremont, Perth, WA, August 2015]

Dorsal view of a male Australasian Shoveler
[Warialda, NSW, April 2014]

Male Australasian Shoveler feeding with its tail up; note the characteristic brown-black appearance, with orange legs
[Old Quipolly Dam, Quirindi, NSW, December 2013]


Lateral view of a female Australasian Shoveler
[Dangars Lagoon, Uralla, NSW, January 2011]

Lateral view of a female Australasian Shoveler
[Dangars Lagoon, Uralla, NSW, January 2011]

Pair of Australasian Shovelers (photo courtesy of C. Hayne)
[Near Moree, NSW, August 2013]

Freckled Duck, front left, with another duck behind it, and a pair of Australasian Shovelers on the right (photo courtesy of C. Hayne)
[Gwydir Wetlands, near Moree, NSW, June 2013]

Pair of Australasian Shovelers - female on the left, male bird on the right, here seen together with a few Grey Teals
[Goran Lake, NSW, April 2011]


Lateral view of two Australasian Shovelers: sub-adult male on the left and adult male on the right
[Warialda, NSW, April 2014]


Social behaviour: Communal Mobility: Vagrant/dispersive Elementary unit: Pair

As filter-feeding birds taking microscopic particles out of water, Australasian Shovelers can regularly be found in sewage treatment works.

Three Australasian Shovelers on a sewage treatment pond; from left to right an adult male, a sub-adult male and a female
[Warialda, NSW, April 2014]

Food, Diet

One of three Australasian Shovelers on a sewage treatment pond seen filter-feeding
[Warialda, NSW, April 2014]


For this species we have recorded the following call(s)/song. The interpretation of their meaning is our own; comments and suggestions for improvement are welcome.

ausshov_20151222.mp3 rhynchotis (NW NSW) Contact calls (male) © MD

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

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If interested, please CLICK HERE. Credits to contributors are given HERE.