Cinnamon Teal

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Common Name: Cinnamon Teal
Scientific Name: Anas cyanoptera

Size: 14.2-16.9 inches (36-43 cm); Wingspan: 22 inches (56 cm)

Habitat: The Americas; their breeding habitat is marshes and ponds in the western United States and extreme southwestern Canada. They are rare visitors to the east coast of the United States. These ducks are migratory and most winter in northern South America and the Caribbean (generally not migrating as far as the Blue-winged Teal), with some wintering in California and southwestern Arizona.

Its preferred habitat is freshwater (including highly alkaline) seasonal and semi- permanent wetlands of various sizes, including large marshes, reservoirs, sluggish streams, ditches, and stock ponds.

Status: Least Concern. Global population: Unknown amount of adult individuals. This species has undergone a small or statistically insignificant decrease over the last 40 years in North America. But overall the population trend is decreasing, although some populations may be stable and others are unknown.

Diet: Seeds and aquatic vegetation, aquatic and semi-terrestrial insects, snails, and zooplankton. Teal feed mainly on the water surface, dabbling with just the bill in water or tips up with the entire head underwater.

Nesting: Male breeding plumage has a bright cinnamon head and body plumage with a dark rump, tail, and under tail. The upper wing has a light-blue patch with a white rear border. The back of wing is iridescent green. Male eyes are red. The Eclipse plumage is gray-brown overall, with a rusty wash. There is a small white area at base of bill.

Females are gray-brown overall, with small white area at base of a dark bill. There’s a light-blue upper wing patch with a narrow white border. The back of wing is mostly brown, with little green. Females have brown eyes. Immatures are similar to adult female.

Cinnamon Teal are seasonally monogamous and usually select new mates each year. The female Cinnamon Teal often places her nest below matted, dead stems of vegetation so it is completely concealed on all sides and from above. She approaches the nest through tunnels in the vegetation. The nest is a depression on the ground, near water, and lined with grasses and down. 4-16 creamy white eggs are laid.

Cool Facts: The Cinnamon Teal is the only duck with separate breeding populations in North America and South America and unlike most North American dabbling ducks; the Cinnamon Teal rarely breeds in the midcontinent prairie-parkland region.

Found in Songbird Remix Waterfowl Volume I: Dabbling Ducks

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