restricted access Geese and atypical ducks
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Egyptian Goose L: 74 cm (29") A bulky, mostly tan-brown goose with a chestnut back and wings and a distinctive black-tipped, pinkish bill, chestnut eye-ring, and chestnut spot in the centre of the breast. In flight it shows large, eyecatching white ovals on the forewings. It is an abundant resident on wetlands throughout Kruger, usually breeding on ponds or waterholes. Birds frequently give a loud and grating call that draws attention to their presence. A symbol of reverence for the ancient Egyptians, this goose is an excellent parent, capable of driving off crocodiles to protect its young. White-faced Duck L: 48 cm (19") This duck often stands upright beside a pond, looking quite long-legged, longnecked and very dark, with a white face. Juveniles are more uniform brown, but still usually show a paler face. It is a common, but highly nomadic, duck in Kruger on still water covered with surface vegetation. It usually flies in small groups, and frequently calls a characteristic whistling “wheee-whee-wooo”, which can sometimes be heard at night. Eats mostly seeds and other plant matter. Numbers increase between December and March when temporary wetlands proliferate, and during wetter years. Geese: 2 and atypical ducks 34 Comb Duck L: 56–76 cm (22–30") A large, odd-looking duck with black wings and white body. Its neck and head are speckled black, and the wings show a greenish iridescence. Males are significantly larger than females, with a grotesque knob-like protuberance on the top of the bill that enlarges during the breeding season. In flight the all-dark wings contrast with the pale body. Young birds are buff below, with dull brown upperparts. The Comb Duck is an uncommon to common resident in Kruger, with numbers increasing between December and March, and during wetter years. It favours freshwater swamps, where it feeds on vegetation by grazing or dabbling. When conditions allow, the males may mate with several females, sometimes forming a harem. Most nests are in tree cavities over water. BIRDS OF RIVERS AND WETLANDS male female 35 ...