Another winter visitor, this generally quiet Gadwall (Mareca strepera) drake can be easily missed among the birds flocking to the wetlands of India. Its appearance is rather drab in comparison to other brilliantly coloured drakes, but a closer look will reveal the understated elegance of the intricate patterns of grey, brown and black on its plumage, complimented by a slim black beak and a black rump patch. Its seemingly unobtrusive demeanour also hides a deviant behaviour, that of snatching food from other diving ducks as they surface. Despite being the third most hunted duck in the world, its population has been steadily increasing, largely due to the efforts of sustainable hunting.
Braggart of Bharatpur: Gadwall
Updated: Mar 27, 2023