Putative chestnut teal and three chestnut-breasted shelduck, Tip Lagoon Invercargill

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Posts: 15
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2018 8:28 pm

Re: Putative chestnut teal and three chestnut-breasted shelduck, Tip Lagoon Invercargill

Postby sjacques » Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:24 pm

Thanks for comments everyone, and I will submit the record via the UBR form.

I am cautiously confident that this is a female chestnut teal (also the Tasmanian bird pictured in the post above), and have so far found the identification process very educational. In addition to my previous comments and those of others I would add;

Upperparts; Solid dark chocolate tone showing green iridescence in strong light. Very limited pale fringing to scapulars and tertials. Relative lack of contrast between the speculum and the tertials in the folded wing. These features seem to be shared in both sexes of chestnut teal, and is a key difference with grey teal, where the scapulars and tertials have prominent pale fringes and the dark speculum stands out in obvious contrast to the pale ground of the upperparts.

Head and neck; I have looked through many images of both species, and this is also a key feature. The tip lagoon bird shows a solid dark cap extending from the nape of the neck forward to reach the bill and down to the bottom the eye. This grades down through the dusky face to a small pale area on the front of the neck. There is no strong contrast between the cap and face, unlike grey teal in which the cap contrasts strongly with the pale face, which is con-colourant with the neck. In this respect, there is a three part pattern in chestnut; cap, face and neck, and a two part pattern in grey; cap and face/neck. A restricted pale area on the front of the neck appears to be a fairly consistent feature in female chestnut teal from the images I have seen.

Attached is a heavy crop of the tip lagoon bird showing a small area of chestnut coloured feathering on the hind flank - note this is also present on the Tasmanian bird.

chestnutty.jpg (46.9 KiB) Viewed 336 times
Steve Wood
Posts: 148
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2009 6:57 pm

Re: Putative chestnut teal and three chestnut-breasted shelduck, Tip Lagoon Invercargill

Postby Steve Wood » Fri Oct 12, 2018 9:59 am

Attached another image of some "Teal" I photographed in Australia a few years back.They were ID as Chestnut Teal based on they appear a lot darker then the Grey Teal.
I think they also resemble Sean's duck but the head shape is different again, these birds having a much more uniformly rounded head if that carry's any weight? Sean's bird is some what angular and not smoothly round and I cant find anything that says the head shape should be different from Grey Teal.
This might be a weak point.
Chestnut Teal (2).jpg
Chestnut Teal (2).jpg (247.26 KiB) Viewed 302 times

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