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2

Australian Shelduck

(Tadorna tadornoides)
Alternate name(s): "Mountain Duck", "Chestnut-coloured Shelduck", "Chestnut-breasted Shelduck"
Aboriginal name(s): "koorak", "kooraka", "nymarak" (WA); "perna"

Size: 56-73 cm
Weight: 1.5 kg (male; avg), 1.3 kg (female; avg); 0.9-2.0 kg (overall)
Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Australian Shelduck at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

Click here for sighting information

Photos

ADULT

MALE

Frontal view of an Australian Shelduck; the all-black head, without grey orbital rings and base of the bill, characterise this bird as a male (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Beeliar North Lake, Cockburn, WA, April 2019]

Close-up near-lateral view of a male Australian Shelduck (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Goulds Lagoon, Hobart, TAS, April 2021]

FEMALE

Lateral view of a female Australian Shelduck (photo courtesy of J. Greaves)
[Herdsman Lake, Perth, WA, January 2015]

Female Australian Shelduck in flight, showing its upperwing pattern (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[Ensay South, East Gippsland, VIC, July 2014]

PAIR

Frontal view of a pair of Australian Shelducks; male on the right, female on the left (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Beeliar North Lake, Cockburn, WA, April 2019]

Near-frontal view of a pair of Australian Shelducks; male on the right, female on the left (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Goulds Lagoon, Hobart, TAS, April 2021]

Near-frontal view of a pair of Australian Shelducks; for comparison 2 Chestnut Teals behind (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Goulds Lagoon, Hobart, TAS, April 2021]

Pair of Australian Shelducks, female on the right, male on the left (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Beeliar North Lake, Cockburn, WA, April 2019]

Close-up lateral view of a pair of Australian Shelducks, With a clear view of the fine vermiculation on the grey wing coverts (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Beeliar North Lake, Cockburn, WA, April 2019]

Lateral view of a pair of Australian Shelducks; male on the left (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Goulds Lagoon, Hobart, TAS, April 2021]

Lateral view of a pair of Australian Shelducks; male on the left, female on the right (photo courtesy of B. Hensen)
[Eastlakes Golf Course, Sydney, NSW, December 2017]

Lateral view of a pair of Australian Shelducks; in the foreground a pair of Pacific Black Ducks
(photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Beeliar North Lake, Cockburn, WA, April 2019]

Lateral view of a pair of Australian Shelducks; in the foreground a Pacific Black Duck
(photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Beeliar North Lake, Cockburn, WA, April 2019]

Pair of Australian Shelducks; the male is seen on the right, the female on the left (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[Ensay North, East Gippsland, VIC, July 2014]

Dorsal view of a pair of Australian Shelducks; male at the back, female in front (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Beeliar North Lake, Cockburn, WA, April 2019]

Pair of Australian Shelducks in flight (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[Hollands Landing, near Gippsland Lakes Coastal Park, VIC, October 2014]

IMMATURE/JUVENILE

Family of Australian Shelducks with 10 ducklings; dad leads the way, literally leaving everyone in his wake (photo courtesy of C. Pears)
[Quindalup, WA, October 2021]

Female Australian Shelduck with 10 ducklings (photo courtesy of C. Pears)
[Quindalup, WA, October 2021]

Australian Shelduck ducklings (photo courtesy of R. Plumtree)
[Lake Newlands, near Apsley, VIC, October 2016]

Behaviour

Like many other waterbirds, Australian Shelducks spend much time resting on or near water (photo courtesy of C. Pears)
[Rottnest Island, WA, April 2018]

Australian Shelducks resting in shallow water together with other ducks (photo courtesy of M. Eaton)
[Beeliar North Lake, Cockburn, WA, April 2019]

Australian Shelducks feeding on pasture, together with Australian White Ibises (photo courtesy of S. Kirkby)
[Near Albany, WA, July 2011]

Australian Shelducks on shallow water in a partially submerged cattle paddock
[Macquarie Marshes NR, NSW, April 2017]

Pair of Australian Shelducks on a beach (photo courtesy of D. Dyer)
[Cervantes, WA, April 2021]

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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