Ruddy ducks are small, stout freshwater diving ducks with broad, short wings and narrow, stiff tails. The male ruddy duck has a bright chestnut body, black crown, white cheeks and blue bill. They swim buoyantly, often with the tail cocked up, and can also gradually submerge without diving. They hardly ever leave the water, being very ungainly on land.
This species is subject to a Government-led eradication programme. As a result, the UK population of ruddy ducks now stands at fewer than 100 birds.
What they eat:
Aquatic insect larvae and plant seeds.
- UK breeding:
- Fewer than 100 birds
- UK wintering:
- 60 birds
This bird species has different identifying features depending on sex/age/season.