British Wildlife Wiki

The Wigeon (Anas penelope) is common and widespread within its range.


Wigeon -


This dabbling duck is 42–50 cm (20 inches) long with a 71–80 cm (32 inch) wingspan, and a weight of 1.5 pounds. The breeding male has grey flanks and back, with a black rear end and a dark green speculum and a brilliant white patch on upper wings, obvious in flight or at rest. It has a pink breast, white belly, and a chestnut head with a creamy crown. In non-breeding (eclipse) plumage, the drake looks more like the female. The female is light brown, with plumage much like a female American Wigeon. It can be distinguished from most other ducks, apart from American Wigeon, on shape. However, that species has a paler head and white axillaries on its underwing. The female can be a rufous morph with a redder head, and a gray morph with a more gray head.

Behaviour and habitat[]

The Wigeon is a bird of open wetlands, such as wet grassland or marshes with some taller vegetation, and usually feeds by dabbling for plant food or grazing, which it does very readily. It nests on the ground, near water and under cover. It is highly gregarious outside of the breeding season and will form large flocks. his is a noisy species. The male has a clear whistle, whereas the female has a low growl.


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