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Gadwall

Anas strepera (Linnaeus, 1758)

Серая утка | Қоңыр үйрек
male

2017-03-09
Turhen river. Almaty oblast.
© Ivan Bevza

Distribution

Breeds and widespread during migration on plains, except waterless areas of Mangyshlak, Ustyurt and Betpak-Dala, in Southern Altai and in some locations in Tien Shan. Three birds recorded in highlands, at Bolshoye Almatinskoye lake 29 August 1972. Wintering in the extreme south of the Republic, in mild winters at Barsa-Kelmes island on Aral Sea. 15 males recorded on Sorbulak lake close to Almaty 15 December 2002.

Biology

Common breeding migrant, locally abundant. Inhabits steppe, desert and forested lakes or rivers, prefers reservoirs with reed and mace beds, both on plains and in mountains up to 2000 m. Appears end February – early March in the south of Kazakhstan, and end March – mid-April in central and northern areas. Migrates in small flocks of up to three dozens birds, often with other ducks. Nest is built near the shore, but sometimes up to 2 km from water. Breeds in separate pairs, but on western shore of Alakol lake loose colonies on small islands of 15-20 pairs with nests 5-20 m distance from one another have been observed. Nest is a shallow hollow on the ground, lined with dry grass stems and down under canopy of grass or bush, and very rarely among reed-beds. Clutches of 5-11 eggs end April – late June. Female incubates 27-28 days. Juveniles hatch late May – mid-July, and begin to fly end July – late August. A second clutch is common after loss of first breeding attempt (late broods recorded end September – early October). After females begin to incubate males gather in flocks and flying to moult on shallow steppe lakes in Northern and Central Kazakhstan (from end May, mainly June – July). Autumn migration in Northern Kazakhstan not well marked, and birds move off in September – first 10 days of October; in southern areas migration begins in mid-August, mainly September – October. Latest records in end October – first 10 days of November.

References

Gavrilov E. I., Gavrilov A. E. "The Birds of Kazakhstan". Almaty, 2005. Э.И.Гаврилов. "Фауна и распространение птиц Казахстана". Алматы, 1999. В.К.Рябицев. "Птицы Урала, Приуралья и Западной Сибири". Екатеринбург. Изд-во Уральского университета, 2000.

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