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Flightless Steamer Duck

From Opus

Alternative names: Fuegian Steamer Duck; Magellanic Steamer Duck

Photo © by skaggstBeagle Channel, Argentina, October 2005
Photo © by skaggst
Beagle Channel, Argentina, October 2005
Tachyeres pteneres

Contents

[edit] Identification

Photo © by Luis RQuemchi, ChiloĂ© Island. Chile, December 2018
Photo © by Luis R
Quemchi, Chiloé Island. Chile, December 2018

74-84cm (29-33 in). The largest Steamer Duck, has a sturdy bill and a massive body.

  • Grey head not contrasting with rest of plumage
  • Bright yellow-orange bill with black nail
  • Yellow-orange feet
  • Brown eyes

Females are similar but smaler and have a darker head. Juveniles lack the wine-coloured tones in the grey plumage and they have a narrow pale eyering.

[edit] Similar species

Separated from Flying Steamer Duck by much larger size, heavy bill and neck, shorter wings and tail, much greyer body and lack of sexual dimorphism.

[edit] Distribution

Southern South America: Tierra del Fuego and Cape Horn Archipelago.
Common to locally abundant in its small range.

[edit] Taxonomy

This is a monotypic species[1].
Often thought to form a superspecies with Falkland Steamer Duck and White-headed Steamer Duck.

[edit] Habitat

Found along rocky coasts and in harbours, sometimes several miles offshore.
Breeds in sheltered bays or channels. Maritime and harbours.

[edit] Behaviour

[edit] Diet

Feeds on aquatic molluscs and crustaceans, takes also small fish. Forages by diving, dabbling or upending in shallow water, mostly during high tide.

[edit] Breeding

Breeding season starts September/October. A monogamous species, pairs probably stay together life-long. Nests near water, often Close to high-water mark, sometimes higher. The nest is a shallow depression on the ground, well hiden among vegetation. Breeds often on small Islands and islets for better protection of terrestrial predators like American Mink. Lays 4 to 8 eggs.

[edit] Movements

A sedentary species. Essentially flightless.

[edit] References

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2018. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2018. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and J Sargatal, eds. 1992. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 1: Ostrich to Ducks. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334108

[edit] External Links

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