grey duck

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.
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ourspot
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Re: grey duck

Postby ourspot » Tue Jan 08, 2019 3:26 pm

Here's a pic of a great grey duck (bottom left) at the Ngunguru WTP this morning showing the classic grey duck features including the dark legs and feet.

The bird to the right also looks like a great grey duck candidate but has the orange legs of a hybrid and would easily be mistaken if you'd only seen it bobbing on the water.

Cheers Scott
Grey Duck_Ngunguru_Jan19_LR_IMG_3686.jpg
Grey Duck_Ngunguru_Jan19_LR_IMG_3686.jpg (645.53 KiB) Viewed 513 times
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Adam C
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Re: grey duck

Postby Adam C » Wed Jan 09, 2019 12:01 am

Looks good!
“Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul.”

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Adam C
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Re: grey duck

Postby Adam C » Wed Jan 09, 2019 12:07 am

I'm sure its just the light but how green was the speculum?

After a lot of 'Googling' Ive found these images which show how green it can be and also just how contrasting the facial pattern can be. I think that first image is as pure bread as I have seen.
1079233-grey-duck-on-short-cutted-grass.jpg
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duckGreyWing350.jpg
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“Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul.”

Samuel Ullman
andrewcrossland
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Re: grey duck

Postby andrewcrossland » Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:41 am

Here's a pic of a 100% Grey Duck - note leg colour.

Pic taken on Lake Koloaka, Nggella Islands, Solomons


Grey Duck.JPG
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Adam C
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Re: grey duck

Postby Adam C » Thu Jan 10, 2019 8:04 am

:D So does this make the whole orange leg thing's a load of old bollocks? No mallards there to swing with ;) No variation in sub-species though?
Last edited by Adam C on Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
“Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul.”

Samuel Ullman
Jim_j
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Re: grey duck

Postby Jim_j » Thu Jan 10, 2019 10:31 am

DNA test required....?
Birds have wings will fly, is it possible that a hybrid reached the Solomons?
Maybe a local brought one in?

I'm not sure that in NZ even if a grey duck ticked all the boxes in terms of ID you can categorically state that there is no trace of Mallard in its DNA and it is not a hybrid - but then does it matter?

cheers
Jim
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Adam C
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Re: grey duck

Postby Adam C » Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:30 am

I reckon the above ducks on the Avon ;) . Andrews just trying to stir things up! :D :lol:
“Nobody grows old merely by living a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals. Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul.”

Samuel Ullman
andrewcrossland
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Re: grey duck

Postby andrewcrossland » Thu Jan 10, 2019 1:19 pm

Ok, so here's the full photo - the mangroves behind show that it sure ain't the Avon River. There was a group of "Pacific Black Ducks". They all had orange legs. And, by the way, In SE Asia this species commonly has orange legs.

G Duck solomons.JPG
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andrewcrossland
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Re: grey duck

Postby andrewcrossland » Thu Jan 10, 2019 1:21 pm

Now, the second urban myth about pure Grey Ducks to dispell - bill colour. You know, that myth that pure greys have leaden bills, while male hybrids have olive green bills with a black nib, and hybrid females have an orangey black bills.

Here's a flock of "Pacific Black Ducks" in Indonesian New Guinea I photographed in 2018. Note bill colour.

Indo Grey Duck2.JPG
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Indo Grey Duck1.JPG
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Grey Duck INDOa.JPG
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andrewcrossland
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Re: grey duck

Postby andrewcrossland » Thu Jan 10, 2019 1:48 pm

ok,so, thinking out loud, how would it be if Grey Duck sexes (or maybe ads v imms) had different coloured bills?? Is the image below of 2 "Grey Ducks" at Bexley Wetlands, CHCH, actually a male and female??

Grey Duck NZ1.JPG
Grey Duck NZ1.JPG (149.31 KiB) Viewed 429 times


Now, before people start to snort and huff and says its pretty unlikely you'd get pure or near pure Grey Ducks on CHCH urban waterways, think again - if we have massive influxes of thousands of hinterland-breeding Grey Teal, Shoveler, Paradise Shelduck and probably a proportion also of our wintering Scaup pop, not to mention a doubling of Pukeko numbers with a large in-migration - why wouldn't the age-old dispersal/migration/movt pattern of inland and southern breeding birds moving into coastal Canterbury wetlands not also include our once most abundant native waterfowl species??

We find Harrier or botulism killed Grey Ducks at the Bromley ponds on the banks sometimes and therefore have the luxury of checking off every visible ID point - and each one ticks off correctly. Heck, if we added olive billed and orange leg birds in there, nos of "Greys" would move from a very small number to a substantially higher one.

Anyway, here's a couple of ("in my view") very good candidates for Grey Duck - the first from the beach at Lake Taupo, the 2nd from a site on the E coast of Northland:

NZ Grey Duck3.JPG
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Grey Duck x.JPG
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I think the bill colour and leg colour should be ignored, and more focus made on green speculum (arrowed on both pics) with single white band, wide eye stripe and "sticky-out" cheek bones. People's thought now I've thrown in those sticks of dynamite?!!
Last edited by andrewcrossland on Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:13 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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