Hardhead

(Aythya Australis)

Appearance:
Male - The male Hardhead has a uniform chocolate-brown plumage above, with white undersides and white undertail. The underwings are white edged with brown. The male has striking white eyes and the beak is blackish with a blue-white bar across the tip.
Female - The female is similar but has brown eyes and has a paler brown plumage.

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Male
Female

Size: - Typical Adult is 45-60cm (18-23in).

Food: - Aquatic plants, seeds, weeds, invertebrates, molluscs, and aquatic insects. They feed by diving deeply, staying submerged for up to a minute at a time.

Habitat/Range: - Wetlands, deep lakes, swamps, rivers, and flooded grassland, they are widespread throughout Australia (mainly in the south-east) and Tasmania, also occasionally found in New Zealand, and New Guinea.

Hardhead Map
Breeding Habitat/Resident,    Migration or Winter Area.

Breeding Season: - August to November.

Eggs: - 9-12 (creamy-white colour).

Notes: - The Hardhead is the only true diving duck in Australia and is sometimes called the white-eyed Duck due to the male's striking white eyes.

Conservation status (IUCN 3.1):
  Least Concern.  

Classification: - Family: Anatidae,
Subfamily: Aythyinae, Genus: Aythya.

Compare with other Duck species.

Compare Diving Ducks.

Hardhead video:


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Hardhead
Hardhead (Aythya Australis)
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