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42β49 cm (16Β½-19ΒΌ in), a mid-sized diving duck.
Breeds in western Europe from the British Isles and France east to Central Europe and more continuously from the shores of the Baltic and eastern Europe east across Asia south of the tundra to Mongolia and western China. Small numbers breed outside main range in Iceland, Spain, Italy and Greece, in Turkey and in Hokkaido, Japan.
A summer visitor to northernmost parts of range. Winters throughout the British Isles and western Europe, around the Mediterranean, Black and Caspian Seas, in India, southern China and Japan. Small numbers winter in sub-Saharan Africa.
Usually breeds on medium-large, fairly deep freshwaters with some marginal vegetation. On passage and in winter often on larger, more open waters, particularly reservoirs and gravel-pits, also estuaries and sometimes on sheltered seas.
The diet consists of aquatic plants, seeds, roots of sedges and grasses; molluscs, aquatic insects and small fish, often feeding at night.
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