American wigeon (Anas americana)
- Dutch name:
- Amerikaanse smient
- English name:
- American wigeon
- German name:
- Nordamerikanische Pfeifente
- French name:
- canard d'Amérique
- Scientific name:
- Anas americana
The American wigeon is a medium-sized dabbling bird; it is larger than a teal, but smaller than a pintail. In silhouette, the wigeon can be distinguished from other dabblers by its round head, short neck, and small bill. This wigeon has two adult molts per year and a juvenile molt in the first year, as well.
Male American wigeons have a white patch from the forehead to the middle of the crown and an iridescent green band from the eye to the back of the head. They have a pinkish-brown breast and sides that are separated from the black undertail coverts by white flank feathers. In flight, the white shoulder patch is diagnostic. In non-breeding (eclipse) plumage, the drake looks more like the female.
Female American wigeons have a gray head with a brownish-black crown and brownish chest and sides. The legs and feet are blue-gray to dark gray. Female vocalization is a "qua-ack." Both sexes have a pale blue bill with a black tip, a white belly, and gray legs and feet. The wing patch behind the speculum is gray. They can be distinguished from most ducks, apart from Eurasian wigeon, by shape. However, that species has a darker head and all grey underwing. The head and neck coloring of the female is different as opposed to the Eurasian wigeon.
The American wigeon is highly gregarious outside of the breeding season and will form large flocks. The American wigeon is a noisy species, and in the field can often be identified by their distinctive calls. Drakes produce a three note whistle, while hens emit hoarse grunts and quacks. The male whistle makes a wheezy whoee-whoe-whoe, whereas the female has a low growl qua-ack.
- Body Length (cm):
- The male (drake) of the American wigeon measures approximately 44-59 centimeters. The female measures approximately 44-59 centimeters.
- Body Weight (grams):
- The male will weight about 600-850 gram. The female will weight about 600-850 gram.
The weight is notoriously variable and can only be used as indication!
- The female American wigeon usually lays from 6-12 creamy white eggs and incubates them for 26-28 days.
- Artificial incubating:
The ideal relative humidity for incubating most waterfowl eggs is 55% (ground nesters) and 40% (cavity nesters). The temperature is usually 37.4°C. Set ventilation as recommended by the incubator manufacturer. Eggs must be turned, either automatically or by hand, a minimum of 4 times a day. As the duckling develops there is a loss of water from the egg and the air sac gets bigger. In normal development of an egg with a 26-28 days incubation, the air sac occupies about a third of it three days earlier. Cleanliness is vital and ideally eggs should be moved to a separate hatcher at this point, where the humidity should be increased to 65% and even higher once they have pipped internally.
- Bird banding:
- Recommended closed leg band ring size for the American wigeon is 9 mm.The leg band ring can only be applied on a young dabbling duck at around 11-12 days old.
- It doesn't matter what leg that you band, but it's good to have a consistent system. Suggested: Left leg = Female, Right leg = Male
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- Maintenance food:
Floating full food for all sea ducks, green ducks, eider ducks and geese, especially in the moulting and breeding phase ideally suited. Packed with wholesome raw materials, natural vitamins and trace elements, this performance food with a protein content of 30% forms the basis for lifelong vitality.
- Europese soort
Het is niet verboden om deze vogels te houden die van nature in Nederland voorkomen, op voorwaarde dat deze vogels in gevangenschap zijn geboren; nakweek dus. Deze vogels zijn voorzien van een gesloten pootring. Het is wel verboden om deze vogels te houden die in het wild gevangen zijn. Alleen bepaalde instanties, zoals vogelasiels en vogelhospitalen, zijn bevoegd om jonge en gewonde wilde vogels te houden. Deze bescherming van vogels wordt vormgegeven door schadelijke handelingen te verbieden zoals:het doden, verwonden, vangen, bemachtigen en met het oog daarop opsporen van vogels (art. 9 Flora- en faunawet); het opzettelijk verontrusten van vogels (art. 10 Flora- en faunawet);het beschadigen, vernielen, uithalen, wegnemen en verstoren van nesten, holen of andere voortplantings- of vaste rust- of verblijfplaatsen van vogels (art. 11 Flora- en faunawet);en het zoeken, rapen, uit het nest nemen, beschadigen of vernielen van eieren van vogels (art. 12 Flora- en faunawet).