Ruddy shelduck – Tadorna ferruginea

Ruddy shelduck – Tadorna ferruginea

Ruddy shelduck – Tadorna ferruginea

The Ruddy shelduck is a bird belonging to the family of anatidés.

It measures between 61 and 67 cm and weights 1.2 to 1.6 kg.

The plumage is mostly red, lighter on the head. Wings are black with a green mirror. Head, beak and tail are black. The female differs from the male by the white large area between the nose and the eye and the lack of black collar.

Ruddy Shelduck are in Romania, Ukraine, China, Mongolia, the steppes of the Altai where it is called red duck. Small, isolated populations are also present in Morocco and Ethiopia. Most hibernates in India and south-east Asia.

Ruddy Shelduck lives in pairs and are faithful, they defend the territory during the breeding season. It takes place between April and May; the nest is placed in a burrow, a tree hole or crevice. The starting migration takes place in September. The Ruddy Shelduck feeds by grazing or dabbling in water.

It nests in cavities along the rivers, lakes and avoids wooded areas. It competes with native species such as the Barn Owl, the Tawny Owl or Kestrel, making it a threat to European biodiversity.

For this reason in Switzerland, it is considered as an invasive species to eliminate.