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Get To Know This 12 months’s Featured World Migratory Chook Day Species: The Ruddy Duck


  • Widespread identify: Ruddy Duck
  • Latin identify: Oxyura jamaicensis
  • Vary: Native to North and South America. Ruddy Geese nest within the prairie pothole areas of Canada, spanning the southern half of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Their Winter vary consists of most of southern North America, travelling as far south as Guatemala and El Salvador
  • Lifespan: Ruddy Geese can dwell as much as 13 years within the wild
  • Dimension: Females and males are related in dimension. Each sexes usually measure 35-43 cm in size, weighing between 300-850 g, with a wingspan of 56-62 cm
  • Inhabitants estimate: There’s an estimated inhabitants of 500,000-1,000,000 people in Canada 


Ruddy Geese are identified to breed in wetlands and reservoirs—86% of their breeding inhabitants is discovered within the prairie pothole area, positioned in south-central Canada and the northern and central United States. When migrating, nonetheless, the geese cease in quite a lot of habitats. Upon arrival at their breeding grounds, males start courtship by swimming round a feminine, tilting their tail and stretching their neck, starting their courtship dance. 

Ruddy geese, regardless of being comparatively small, lay among the largest duck eggs on this planet! Egg sizes vary from 5.9-6.8 cm lengthy, with widths of 4.3-4.8 cm. Females can lay anyplace from 6 to 10 eggs and have an incubation interval of 23 to 26 days. 

By way of look, male geese have black-capped heads and shiny white cheeks. Relying on the season, their plumage colors range. In the summertime, their our bodies are a wealthy chestnut color and their payments are shiny blue. In winter, their our bodies tackle a grey, brown color and their payments are a a lot duller shade of brown. Females, however, are brown year-round and lack the intense white cheek patch of the males, as an alternative of getting a darkish stripe. 

Ruddy geese are considerably uncoordinated walkers, their legs are positioned additional again on their physique which makes for strolling difficulties. Regardless of being clumsy on land, this function makes them very agile in water, they’re simply in a position to sink and dive underwater. With one push of their toes, the geese are in a position to dive a metre underwater. 


As with many species, habitat loss and degradation are a principal concern for the Ruddy Duck. Particularly, water pollution reminiscent of polychlorinated biphenyl, selenium, heavy metals, and lead have been proven to build up within the Ruddy Duck1. The inhabitants of Ruddy Geese in Chesapeake Bay dropped drastically over a interval from 1955 to 1979, as a consequence of a number of elements together with invasive species and air pollution. Due to their heavy reliance on wetlands and marshes, the species is closely impacted by wetland drainage. 


The Ruddy Duck is protected underneath the Migratory Birds Conference Act in Canada, in addition to the US Migratory Chook Act. The species is classed as “Least Concern” by the Worldwide Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN and has a “Safe” standing underneath the Wild Species designation. As of 2013, the Ruddy Duck was listed as being above the inhabitants aim in accordance with the North American Waterfowl Administration Plan. 


Advocating for the well being and preservation of native wetlands and marshes is extraordinarily essential for Ruddy Geese (and numerous different species!) due to their excessive ranges of biodiversity. Getting concerned with native conservation teams or writing to native authorities officers may help save these areas. Spreading consciousness and educating others on the significance of those areas is without doubt one of the finest methods to assist the Ruddy Duck. 

If you wish to take a stand for Ruddy Geese in your neighborhood, and save fowl lives extra typically, become involved with an area Chook Group in your neighborhood to work in direction of changing into Chook Pleasant Metropolis Licensed or Host and take part in an upcoming World Migratory Chook Day occasion close to you!

  • 1Canadian Wildlife Service Waterfowl Committee. 2014. Inhabitants Standing of Migratory Sport Birds in Canada: November 2014. CWS Migratory Birds Regulatory Report Quantity 44 content=Thepercent20Ruddypercent20Duckpercent20ispercent20not,throughoutpercent20itspercent20Canadianpercent20breedingpercent20range.
  • 2The Cornell Lab, 2019. All About Birds, Ruddy Duck
  • 3Corridor, L. 2008. “Oxyura jamaicensis” (On-line), Animal Variety Internet. Accessed March 29, 2022 at



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