Common Pochard Aythya Ferina

Common Pochard Male

Identfication

The Common Pochard are 42-49cm in length and smaller than a Mallard. This diving duck has a short and round neck and a round head. The Male has a pale grey back with a rusty red head and neck, also a black breast and tail. The female has a yellowish brown back with a dark crown and rather blotchycheeks. the juvenil3 is the female but has a grey brown back with pale checks and neck. In flight both sexes show a palke grey stripe on the wing. the moulting of feathers takes place between June and October with the male being first. The Flight feathers are moulted simutainiously and the bird are totaly flightless for 3-4 weeks during the moult. In eclipse plumage resembles the female, but with a more uniform brown head and greyer back.

Habits

The Common Pocvhard may appear to spend alot of time asleep that because it mostly feeds at night. They are usually seen in small flocks or in larger flocks outside their breeding season. In the flocks that can be found in the United Kingdom there are a higher proportion of males to females. they swm rather low with the tail flat to the water and patters aong the surface to take off. In Flight the short wings and heavy body give a dumpy apperance and their rapid wingbeats maes a whistling sound.

Female Common Pochard