Mallard x Pateke hybrids

General birdwatching discussion, help with bird identification, and all other things relating to wild birds and birding in NZ that don't fit in one of the other forums.
Clinton9
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Re: Mallard x Pateke hybrids

Postby Clinton9 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 4:16 pm

Here is a photo of Pateke walking after his wife...domestic Mallard duck !

I had seen them and photographed them.

20181006_143237.jpg
Pateke walking after his wife...domestic Mallard duck !, Thames. 6/10/18
20181006_143237.jpg (329.21 KiB) Viewed 134 times
Jim_j
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Re: Mallard x Pateke hybrids

Postby Jim_j » Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:23 pm

Understand Ian.
The issue could be though that the Grey Duck is actually functionally extinct as a species!
There are a couple of good articles in recent Notornis re identification and issues that have been mentioned in other posts on this site.
It seems that just because it ticks the features for a Grey Duck doesn't mean it is...

The situation is what it is - I can't see any way to turn back the clock.
Perhaps its time to just say we now have NZ Grey Mallards.

I personally don't have any issue with control of these birds to protect re-establishing Brown Teal if it is an issue - might be a difficult task though - specially as they start to spread?

Interesting Clinton - a male Brown Teal with a female NZ Grey Mallard - presumably the Brown Teal out competed the other Grey/Mallards for her attention - which seems to go against the theory that aggressive male Mallards are responsible fol the inter-breeding?

Cheers
Jim
Clinton9
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Re: Mallard x Pateke hybrids

Postby Clinton9 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:38 pm

Pateke's wife is a domestic Mallard duck, not a wild hybrid Mallard X Grey duck (Grey Mallard duck).
Jim Kirker
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Re: Mallard x Pateke hybrids

Postby Jim Kirker » Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:51 pm

Good evening Ian,
I'm cautious when it comes to interfering in biological processes with insufficient knowledge of the possible outcomes. I don't doubt that hybridisation of grey duck/pacific black duck with mallards has reduced populations of the former, but I'm uncertain that we have enough evidence to show imminent extinction. That's why I would rather support ongoing monitoring than culling.
I lack the knowledge to comment usefully on the biology, but did find an article that applies. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4947151/
Notably, the authors conclude that "halting the introduction of hybridization‐prone exotics and restoring mature and diverse habitats that are resistant to hybrid establishment should be management priorities." However, they also note that "hybridization may rescue the viability of small, inbred populations. Understanding the factors that contribute to destructive versus constructive outcomes of hybridization is key to managing conservation concerns."
On a personal level, the ducks I lump as "mallards" when birdwatching are among my favorite birds and I suspect non-birdwatchers with young children would agree. I have seen ducks that tick all the boxes for Grey Duck in a suburban Auckland pond and also, more commonly in the Taupo region, even decades after the mallard introductions, so I suspect there is a stable remnant population.
The hybrid "vigor" I mentioned in previous post is not an opinion based on specialist knowledge - more an emotive defense of the hybrids as survivors in climate associated environmental change, due to their genetic variability.
Best wishes, Jim
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Neil Fitzgerald
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Re: Mallard x Pateke hybrids

Postby Neil Fitzgerald » Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:43 pm

I photographed patekelards at Waikanae in 2008, as have others.
viewtopic.php?t=2778
Clinton9
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Re: Mallard x Pateke hybrids

Postby Clinton9 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:16 pm

I have several Mallard wings, but I only have one Grey duck wing.

Mallard ducks are birds of temperate climate, down to latitude 60 o N, up to Iceland and very rare visitors past latitude 37 o N & S to India and New Caledonia, Spain.

Commonest from latitude 40 o N to 55 o N.

Mallard ducks have very thick plumage, with very heavy dense downy feathers, while Pacific Black ducks & Grey ducks have less thick plumage and less dense downy feathers.

20191028_193451.jpg
Wings: Top: Grey duck Bottom: Mallard duck.
20191028_193451.jpg (317.21 KiB) Viewed 107 times


20191028_193451.jpg
Wings: Top: Grey duck Bottom: Mallard duck.
20191028_193451.jpg (317.21 KiB) Viewed 107 times


20191028_193451.jpg
Wings: Top: Grey duck Bottom: Mallard duck.
20191028_193451.jpg (317.21 KiB) Viewed 107 times


In Mallard ducks"s native countries, they were the nature's hybridist, they hybridized with Green-winged teals to Ruddy Shelducks.
20191028_193526.jpg
First winter Mallard duck wing
20191028_193526.jpg (329.88 KiB) Viewed 107 times
20191028_193513.jpg
First winter Grey duck wing
20191028_193513.jpg (346.28 KiB) Viewed 107 times
Clinton9
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Re: Mallard x Pateke hybrids

Postby Clinton9 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 8:19 pm

Sorry about three same photos of duck wings, this is due to computer not working.
Ian McLean
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Mallard x Pateke hybrids

Postby Ian McLean » Mon Oct 28, 2019 9:17 pm

Thanks for posting the pictures of the wings Clinton9, the edged feathers on the base Grey Duck wing are fantastic & an excellent resource for you to have !
Jim Kirker, hybridisation could be a good thing with very small populations e.g. it would likely be a good thing if an Australian Fairy Tern arrived in Northland to breed with a New Zealand Fairy Tern ? The issue with Mallards is that they are hybridizing Grey Ducks to extinction & it is only happening because they were introduced.
Attached are a few additional photos of Mallard x Pateke hybrids.
Cheers
Ian
Mallard x Pateke hybrid Oscar Thomas.jpg
A hen Mallard x Pateke hybrid with ducklings on Motutapu Island in October 2018, taken by Oscar Thomas. This bird was larger with a longer bill & different head profile compared to typical Pateke.
Mallard x Pateke hybrid Oscar Thomas.jpg (400.15 KiB) Viewed 103 times
Mallard x Pateke hybrid George Hobson.jpg
The drake bird at the rear looks to be a Mallard hybrid being larger & with a different bill profile. This photo was taken by George Hobson in Russell during a Birds New Zealand youth camp.
Mallard x Pateke hybrid George Hobson.jpg (360.9 KiB) Viewed 103 times

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