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< >  Anas bernieri - Bernier's duck (Click photographs/illustrations: full picture & further details)

INFORMATION AVAILABLE

GENERAL & REFERENCES

EXTERNAL APPEARANCES

REPRODUCTION

BEHAVIOUR

NATURAL DIET

RANGE & HABITAT

CONSERVATION

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General and References

Alternative Names (Synonyms)

Madagascar teal
Madagascan teal
Bernierente (German)
Sarcelle de Bernier (French)
Sarcelle de Madagascar (French)
Cerceta Malgache (Spanish)
Cerceta de Madagascar (Spanish)
Nettion bernieri

Names for newly-hatched

Duckling, downy.

Names for non-breeding males or other colour-phases

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References

Species Author

Debra Bourne

Major References

B1, B3, B5, B8, B19, B25.

Aviculture references:
J51. 34.w1
B7, B29, B30, B40, B94, B128.w1
D1, D8

Other References

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TAXA Group (where information has been collated for an entire group on a modular basis)

Parent Group

Specific Needs Group referenced in Management Techniques

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Aviculture Information

Notes

General Information:
  • Dabbling Ducks are generally hardy, easy to maintain and easy to breed. Shelter may be required by some of the smaller species in winter. They should be provided with cover (including marginal pond cover) and loafing areas as well as water. A pen which is 50% water is suggested. The water may be shallow (i.e. no more than two feet deep is required), and muddy areas for dabbling in are also appreciated. These ducks are generally good in mixed collections, although the smaller and quieter species may be bullied. Territorial disputes between ducks of the same species may be avoided by keeping only one pair of each species in an enclosure, unless the area is very large. For a single pair of ducks a pen are of 50 to 100 square metres, depending on the size of duck, should be provided.
  • A diet based on wheat and pellets is suggested, with maintenance pellets changed to breeders pellets for the breeding season. Bread and greenfood are also appreciated. Grit should always be available, with soluble grit (e.g. oystershell grit) as a calcium source when breeding.
  • Most species are ground nesters and both close ground cover and ground level nest boxes should be provided. Hand-rearing is generally preferred, as these ducks are generally poor parents in captive conditions, particularly in enclosures shared with other waterfowl. These ducks are prone to hybridization, particularly with closely related species, which should be kept apart from one another.

(B7, B29, B30, B40, B94, B128.w1, D1)

Species-specific information:

  • Bernier's duck (Madagascar teal) have been maintained fully winged in aviaries, with heated indoor accommodation and a large concrete pond modified to allow foraging at different depths. The aviary was well planted, with high perches available which were used extensively in the daytime. In a larger aviary the ducks developed territories. They mixed well with Mixed with African white-backed duck Thalassornis leuconotus leuconotus (Thalassornis leuconotus - White-backed duck) and African pygmy goose Nettapus auritus (Nettapus auritus - African pygmy-goose). Fine-chopped and occasionally whole green vegetables such as lettuce, cabbage and kale were provided.
  • They were fed Fenland duck maintenance pellets (Clark and Butcher Ltd., , UK), 15% protein, with crushed maize, wheat and insectivorous food (Bogena Universal Food, Bogena, Netherlands.), white millet, and mealworms. The main foods were offered and eaten both wet and dry. March to August (breeding season), maintenance pellets were replaced with Fenland Duck Breeder Pellets (17% protein).
  • Various hole-fronted nestboxes were placed at various heights, plus grey teal Anas gracilis box designed by Ducks Unlimited (New Zealand) - 34cm high, 21cm long, 23cm wide, hole 90mm diam 90mm from lid with overhang, and hollow logs. Chosen nest sites were a nest box on a pole, 3m up, close to and shaded by large leaft tree outside the enclosure and a hollow log, entrance hole 1m up. Eggs were taken and artificially incubated, the ducks being left on dummies and two eggs were returned for hatching and rearing. Once the ducklings hatched the parents became very aggressive and took over whole avairy. Tolerance of other duck species while breeding was variable.
  • Incubator hatched ducklings were reared in heated brooder boxes. Standard rearing, initially Fenland Starter Crumbs (20% protein, changed at three weeks to Fenland Grower Pellets (17.5% protein), and to Fenland Duck Pellets after fledging. Fine chopped cabbage, kale and lettuce were provided, and daily mealworms.

J51. 34.w1

Aviornis UK Ringing Scheme recommended average ring size: H 8.0mm, some J 9.0mm (D8).

Management Techniques

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External Appearance (Morphology)

Measurement & Weight

Length 16 inches, 40cm (B3, B1).
Adult weight General --
Male 11.3-14.3 ounces, mean 13.5 ounces (seven birds) (B8).
Female 12.9-13.6 ounces, mean 13.2 ounces (two birds) (B8).
Newly-hatched weight --
Growth rate --

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Head

Adult Bill Male Light reddish (B6, B25).
Variations (If present) Female: browner red (B25).
Eyes (Iris) Male Brown (B25).
Variations(If present) --
Juvenile Bill --
Eyes (Iris) --

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Legs

Adult Male Light reddish (B5, B25)
Variations (If present) Female: browner red (B6, B25).
Juvenile --

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Plumage

Adult Male Head and neck light brown, with darker speckles, slightly darker on crown and hindneck, buff throat. Breast and underparts brown with darker feather centre markings, largest on flanks, upperparts dark brown with paler buff-brown feather edges. Wing dark brown with greater coverts broad white tipped and secondaries slightly green-glossed black, with white tips – speculum black bounded with white (B5, B8, B25).
Variations (If present) --
Juvenile --

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Newly-hatched Characteristics

General: Upperparts blackish-brown, underparts yellowish (B1).
Bill: --
Feet: --

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Reproduction

Reproductive Season

Time of year Possibly November, perhaps also April (B3); starting September (B1).
No. of Clutches --

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Nest placement and structure

Near water, from thin reeds or grass (B1).

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Egg clutches

No. of Eggs Average
Range  
Egg Description  

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Incubation

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Hatching

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Fledging

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Sexual Maturity

Males --
Females --

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Behaviour

Feeding Behaviour

Adults Dabble in mud while wading in shallow water (B3, B8, B25).
Newly-hatched --

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Parental Behaviour

Nest-building Solitary or loose groups (B1).
Incubation --
Newly-hatched --
Juveniles

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Social Behaviour

Intra-specific Found in pairs and small groups of pairs; pairs defend feeding spaces (B3, B8, B25).
Inter-specific --

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Sexual Behaviour

Pair formation July (B25).

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Predation in Wild

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Activity Patterns

Sleep on banks during the day, particularly at midday (B3, B8).
Circadian Crepuscular: feed mainly morning and evening, but also known to forage through much of both day and night (B3, B8).

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Natural Diet

Adults

Aquatic insects, other invertebrates, seeds and other vegetable matter (B8).

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Newly-hatched

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Range and Habitat

Distribution and Movement (Migration etc.)

Normal

Madagascar: western lowlands; sedentary (B1, B19).

Occasional and Accidental

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Introduced

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Habitat

Small, shallow saline lakes with extensive reedbeds and adjacent wetlands, mangrove swamps, estuary sandbars, marshes, paddy fields, rivers; use exposed rather than heavily vegetated areas (B8, B19).

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Conservation

Intraspecific variation

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Conservation Status

Wild Population -
(Importance)

Endangered; very low numbers - perhaps a few hundred total (B1, B8).

CITES listing CITES II (B1)
Red-data book listing Endangered.
Threats Loss of habitat main threat, also hunting, and food is lost to introduced fish (B8).

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Captive Populations

Breeding programme set up at Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust (formerly Jersey Wildlife Preservation Trust) (B8).

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Trade

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