|Ruddy Shelduck (Tadorna ferruginea) at Fairburn|
The best, most unusual sighting though was amongst a group of Shelducks. In the middle of them was a lovely rusty coloured bird. Looking through some binoculars I could see it was a bird that I had seen before - it was a Ruddy Shelduck. I recognised it as they were a lovely bird I saw when visited Washington Wetlands Centre.
|Pair of Ruddy Shelducks at the|
Washington Wetlands Centre
- They have an average length of 64cm (25 inches) and they have an average wingspan of 123cm (48 inches).
- They are of least concern as they breed quite a lot in other countries. They are not native to Britain.
- Since the 1950's, there has only been around 100 records! Weirdly, though, there HAS been 1 or 2 breeding pairs in some years!
|The males have a black ring around their neck|
- In some countries, like Tibet and Mongolia, the Ruddy Shelduck is considered sacred by Buddhists.
- Their scientific name name has celtic roots, Tadorna means 'Pied Waterfowl' just like the British Shelduck.
- While they inhabit a variety of habitats they prefer inland fresh water, you won't find them in coastal waters.
- They look really placid but can actually be quite aggressive. They also have a call described as a wild loud honking.
- From what I've read this bird is probably an escaped bird or a feral bird as the European population has declined and visitors from their main breeding areas of Asia are less likely.
Well, a lovely bird but not very common in the UK. I didn't find lots of information out there on them but here's a couple of links to some sites:
Hope you enjoyed,