Eurasian Widgeon


Common Name
Kingdom
Phylum
Class
Order
Family
Genus
Species
Eurasian Widgeon
Animalia
Cordata
Aves
Anseriformes
Anatidae
Anas
penelope
Eurasian Widgeon Click here for larger image
Natural History

Widgeons are dabbling ducks - they feed on aquatic plants and invertebrates. Dabbling ducks skim food from the water's surface and feed in shallow water by tipping forward until their tail end is in the air. These ducks can take off from the surface of the water. Most ducks we see in urban ponds and lakes are dabblers.

There is another group of ducks called diving ducks. These ducks tend to eat more invertebrates and completely submerge to find food. Their small wings and feet placed farther back on their body aid in swimming underwater. They must patter along the water's surface to take flight however. Next time you see some ducks on a pond, watch them feed. Are they dabblers or divers?

Why this species?

A single male has been seen at the Rio Salado ponds for the past three winters. The Eurasian widgeon's normal range is northern Eurasia to North Africa. Using the scientific name eliminates confusion when talking with other peoples.