Mallard Identification

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The Four Keys to ID

  • Size & Shape

    Mallards are large ducks with hefty bodies, rounded heads, and wide, flat bills. Like many “dabbling ducks” the body is long and the tail rides high out of the water, giving a blunt shape. In flight their wings are broad and set back toward the rear.

    Relative Size

    A fairly large duck, noticeably larger than teal but much smaller than a Canada Goose.

    Relative Sizebetween crow and goosebetween crow and goose
    • Both Sexes
      • Length: 19.7-25.6 in (50-65 cm)
      • Weight: 35.3-45.9 oz (1000-1300 g)
      • Wingspan: 32.3-37.4 in (82-95 cm)

Regional Differences

A subspecies of the Mallard called the “Mexican Duck,” Anas platyrhynchos diazi, occurs in parts of Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, and Mexico. Both males and females closely resemble female Mallards, although the body color is somewhat darker than a typical female Mallard. Mexican Ducks were once thought to be a full species, but they hybridize extensively with typical Mallards in the northern parts of their range.

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