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A beginners help please

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Old Saturday 27th November 2004, 22:12   #1
klewis
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A beginners help please

I've checked the obvious books on these and I guess they are just crossbreeds but any idea on the parentage? They were all in a group of mallards on the Cotswold waterpark yesterday

The img_1901 has some mallard in there somewhere with the curled tail but as a newbie what should I be looking at to give me the clues?
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Old Saturday 27th November 2004, 22:43   #2
lou salomon
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all of them are "bastards" of Mallard, which are very variable. They have blood of domestic forms, the white breast in pics 2 and 3 might indicate a Muscovy duck (Cairhina moschata) as an ancestor.
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Old Sunday 28th November 2004, 03:04   #3
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Hi - don't think they've got any Muscovy - that tends to add the reddish tissue at the base of the bill also. Number three has some of the domesticated duck that has a crested head. There was another thread on the subject of domestic/wild hybrids that has some interesting info.

http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?t=25172

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Old Sunday 28th November 2004, 07:31   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klewis
I've checked the obvious books on these and I guess they are just crossbreeds but any idea on the parentage? They were all in a group of mallards on the Cotswold waterpark yesterday

The img_1901 has some mallard in there somewhere with the curled tail but as a newbie what should I be looking at to give me the clues?
Having just infuriatingly lost a fuller answer by pressing the wrong key, I'll shorten this one or my breakfast will be cold...

This is a good site to help:

http://www.scricciolo.com/Plumages%2...ages_molts.htm

Also ask these questions of ducks - especially when their plumage is in "eclipse" (during the winter or non-breeding times):

a) How large is it compared to a known species (such as mallard)?
b) Is it diving or dabbling (they never do both, so far as I know!)?
c) If it's a seeming hybrid, What species is it mixing with?
d) Any sounds - "whistling", for example.


If you don't have them, I'd buy two guides, the larger Collins and the pocketable Mitchell Beazely or the RSPB). They'll help. But, join the club, by the way - duck (and wader) identification is hard, "newbie" or otherwise!
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Old Sunday 28th November 2004, 15:41   #5
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Steve, Duck-wader ID hard, newbie or otherwise, you missed out gulls too argggggh.
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Old Sunday 28th November 2004, 15:53   #6
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It's a shame number 1 isn't a true species, it's got lovely colouring.
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Old Sunday 28th November 2004, 17:23   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bert
Steve, Duck-wader ID hard, newbie or otherwise, you missed out gulls too argggggh.
Dead right, Bert. I'm u/s as they say on gulls, better on ducks and so-so on waders.

I can recognise a juvenile little gull, though - aren't they a beauty?
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Old Sunday 28th November 2004, 18:21   #8
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Wink

Quote:
Originally Posted by scampo
Dead right, Bert. I'm u/s as they say on gulls, better on ducks and so-so on waders.

I can recognise a juvenile little gull, though - aren't they a beauty?
They sure are steve, i invested in the book of "Gulls" of Europe, Asia, and north America. very good to. Time will tell anyway!!
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