• Male

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Baikal Teal

Anas formosa
The swans, geese and ducks are mid-sized to large birds most commonly found on or near water. Most have plump bodies, long necks and short wings. Most feed while on the water, diving or merely tilting their bodies so that their heads and necks are submerged to search for fish, plants and invertebrates. Washington representatives of the order all belong to one family:
The waterfowl family is represented in Washington by two distinct groups—the geese and swans, and the ducks. Whistling-ducks are also considered a distinct subfamily, and, although they have not been sighted in Washington in many years, Fulvous Whistling-Ducks have been recorded historically in Washington and remain on the official state checklist. All members of the waterfowl family have large clutches of precocial young. They hatch covered in down and can swim and eat on their own almost immediately after hatching.
Accidental visitor. Washington Bird Records Committee review list species.

    General Description

    The head of the breeding-plumaged male Baikal Teal is arrestingly patterned in green, buff, black, and white. Vertical white bands separate the gray sides from the dull rosy-brown breast and black undertail. Colorful pointed scapulars overhang the rear flanks and tail. Females, juveniles, and non-breeding-plumaged males are rather similar to the comparable plumages of the somewhat smaller Green-winged Teal, but more reddish-brown overall and with a distinctive white spot on the face at the base of the bill.

    The Baikal Teal breeds on tundra and taiga in central and eastern Siberia, winters in southern and eastern China and southern Japan, and is a casual vagrant to Alaska and down the coast to California. This highly decorative duck has long been popular in waterfowl collections, which complicates the question of birds found in the wild. In the past most records were assumed to be escaped birds. Such was the case of a male Baikal Teal shot from a flock of Green-winged Teal at Dungeness (Clallam County) in January 1920. A more recent record of a long-staying visitor near Kent (King County) in winter 2004–2005 has been accepted by the Washington Bird Records Committee. Oregon and British Columbia each have one record as well.

    Revised June 2007

    Federal Endangered Species ListAudubon/American Bird Conservancy Watch ListState Endangered Species ListAudubon Washington Vulnerable Birds List

    View full list of Washington State's Species of Special Concern