Discover… Freckled Ducks
Dalmatians have nothing on Freckled Ducks! This duck is covered in small white speckles, making the Freckled Duck one of Australia’s most beautiful and rare waterbirds.
Crimson and clovers
Other than the small white speckles that cover them from head to tail, male Freckled Ducks have another fascinating feature – a crimson beak. This striking crimson beak only transforms to its crimson shade during the breeding season. Why? To attract the ladies of course!
Their crimson beak may be striking, but it can also mean Freckled Ducks stand out in the crowd. To avoid any risky business, Freckled Ducks prefer to feed at dusk and dawn to protect them from predators. Some of their favourite snacks include algae, seeds, clovers, grasses and sometimes even small invertebrates.
Getting down to business
As an endangered native duck, it’s important that Freckled Ducks get busy in the breeding season. They will usually breed between October and December and love to breed in large, temporary swaps that have been created by flooding events. They nest near the water, constructed from finely woven twigs and down.
Males will stay with females during the incubation period. But afterwards it is up to female Freckled Ducks to rear the ducklings.
Living the swamp life
Freckled Ducks are usually found in freshwater swamps and creeks. These ducks can also be a wee bit shy, so it’s important that their homes have heavy growth of dense vegetation so they can rest and relax.
Unfortunately, these types of homes are getting harder for Freckled Ducks to find. Land clearing of wetlands and swamps, as well as trampling and grazing from cattle, is threatening Freckled Ducks’ welfare and conservation. Although they are protected species, they are sometimes shot by hunters, as they are often mistaken for other species of duck.
Listen to the Freckled Duck