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< > Dendrocygna javanica - Lesser whistling-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)

Lesser Tree Duck
Javan Tree Duck
Indian Whistling Duck
Javan Whistling duck
Lesser Whistling Teal
Zwergpfeifgans (German)
Javapfeifgans (German)
Dendrocygne de l'Inde (French)
Dendrocygne siffleur (French)
SuirirÝ de Java (Spanish)
Pato silbador de la India (Spanish)

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, B4, B8, B19, B25, B26.

Aviculture references:
J23.13.w10
B7, B29, B30, B97
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:
  • Whistling-ducks generally do well, either in pens or in a park with access to extensive water area and good natural cover. They are gregarious outside the breeding season, and groups may bully smaller duck species, so should be kept in large areas, in which other birds have room to escape. Most need shelter in severe weather and a well-sheltered pen with frost-free night quarters for winter is suggested, or plenty of ground cover and/or straw to stand on, as they are susceptible to frostbite. They may be kept fully-flighted in aviaries, and have also been kept full-winged in open pens, tending not to wander. Perches should be provided at an appropriate height for pinioned or wing-clipped birds. Commercial pellets and grain are suitable for feeding.
  • Elevated nest boxes are appreciated by most species, although pinioned birds will use ground-level boxes; boxes may be placed over water or land. Eggs may be incubated by bantams and ducklings may be bantam-reared. Many species have been sucessfully parent-reared in captivity. Pairs kept isolated and fully flighted in a covered pen, with high-hung nest boxes "seldom fail to rear broods" (B7). Whistling-duck species may hybridise with one another and therefore should be kept in seperate enclosures, and hybridisation has also occasionally been reported with Netta peposaca - Rosy-billed pochard.

(J23.13.w10, B7, B29, B97).

Species-specific information:

  • Probably the least hardy of the whistling-ducks.
  • Rarely bred. Nest in close ground cover, ground-level nest box or perhaps raised nest box. Lay usually May to June.
  • May hybridise with Dendrocygna bicolor - Fulvous whistling-duck.

(J23.13.w10, B29, B30, D1)

Aviornis UK Ringing Scheme recommended average closed ring size: K 10.0mm (D8).

Management Techniques

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External Appearance (Morphology)

Measurement & Weight

Length 15-16" 38-40cm (B1, B3)
Adult weight General Approximately 450-600g (B1, B3); 1-1.0lb (B8)
Male --
Female --
Newly-hatched weight --
Growth rate --

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Head

Adult Bill Male Dark grey
Variations (If present) --
Eyes (Iris) Male Dark brown, surrounded by thin pale yellow ring.
Variations(If present) --
Juvenile Bill Dark grey
Eyes (Iris) Dark brown, surrounded by thin pale yellow ring

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Legs

Adult Male Grey
Variations (If present) --
Juvenile Grey

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Plumage

Adult Male Generally pale buff.

Head, neck and breast pale buff with crown slightly darker grey-brown and throat whitish.

Flanks and abdomen light rufous-cinnamon with creamy streaks, poorly defined, along the upper edge of the flank.

Ventral region and undertail coverts whitish.

Upperparts dark brown, greyer caudally, with golden-rufous feather margins. Rump blackish, uppertail coverts chestnut, tail brown.

Wing dark brown with chestnut lesser wing-coverts.

Variations (If present)  
Juvenile Duller with upperparts feather fringes paler, underparts paler and less rufous.

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Newly-hatched Characteristics

General: Upperparts black-brown with pale markings; underparts whitish; face streaked
Bill: Grey
Feet: Grey

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Reproduction

Reproductive Season

Time of year Extended breeding season, peaking in the rainy season.
No. of Clutches --

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Nest placement and structure

On the ground in covering vegetation, in tree hollows, in low bushes and also using disused raptor, heron, crow, stork or cormorant nests.

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Egg clutches

No. of Eggs Average 9 (B8).
Range 7-12 (B1); 8-12 (B8).
Egg Description White. Size: 47 x 38 mm, weight: 35g.

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Incubation

26-30 days (B1, B8)

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Hatching

Synchronous.

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Fledging

45-50 days (B8)

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Sexual Maturity

Males --
Females --

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Behaviour

Feeding Behaviour

Adults Forage in small groups in dense emergent vegetation, and in rice paddies.
Newly-hatched --

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Parental Behaviour

Nest-building --
Incubation Both sexes incubate
Newly-hatched Both adults care for the ducklings and are very attentive.
Juveniles

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Social Behaviour

Intra-specific Breed in loose colonies. Often seen in groups of 20-25 birds, sometimes in larger flocks (e.g. 1,000).
Inter-specific --

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Sexual Behaviour

Form strong, probably permanent pair bonds.

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Predation in Wild

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Activity Patterns

Roost in trees or on islands and partially submerged branches.
Circadian Generally diurnal.

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Natural Diet

Adults

Grass, rice, seeds, waterweed shoots; also small invertebrates - freshwater snails, insects, and frogs.

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Newly-hatched

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Range and Habitat

Distribution and Movement (Migration etc.)

Normal

Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, SouthEast China, Taiwan, Indochina to Borneo, Sumatra, Java.

Local movements dependent on water availability, otherwise mostly sedentary except that the northern Chinese population moves south for the winter.

Occasional and Accidental

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Introduced

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Habitat

Small shallow waterbodies surrounded by trees (for roosting) and containing abundant marshy vegetation. Rarely seen on the ocean just outside the surf line.

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Conservation

Intraspecific variation

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Conservation Status

Wild Population -
(Importance)

Not globally threatened: estimated global population 100,000-1,000,000.

CITES listing --
Red-data book listing --
Threats Culled in some areas as pests on rice crops.

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Captive Populations

Reasonable numbers but not widespread and bred by relatively few aviculturists.

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Trade

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