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southern pochard

Birds of Namibia

Introduction: Southern pochards (Netta erythrophthalma) prefer a habitat of deep, clear, seasonal and freshwater wetlands with growing vegetation. They spend most of their time on the water and rarely come ashore. This species is widespread but not abundant in the region.

Distribution: Scattered along coastal and central regions most common in the north-east of Namibia and Caprivi.

Diet: Feeds by day and night by diving into the water and remains submerged for around 20 seconds, enough time to forage around for fluke snails and water-lilies. Grass and seeds are also on the menu.

Description: Small to medium-sized duck with characteristic red eye, blue-grey bill, black nail and grey legs and feet with black webs.

Breeding: Females build a nest in vegetation of leaves and stems of grasses and aquatic plants. Between 8 and 15 eggs are laid February to April. The incubation period is 20 to 28 days.

Size: 48 to 51cm. Weight: 800g.

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