African Pygmy Goose

African Pygmy Goose (Nettapus auritus) of Africa is one of the smallest waterfowl species found in the world at 12 inches long. There are 3 pygmey geese world wide (2 in Australia are likely protected). African Pygmy Geese are technically a type of perching and dabbling duck, but “goose” in the name refers to the bill size and shape, which is specialized for lilies. This species has very large, black eyes and stubby yellow bills. Bills have a large hook on the end that is colored black. The plumage is nothing short of intricate and unique. Males have large sage ear patches on either side of the back of their heads that are outlined in black. Their cap is normally an iridescent green, and the rest of their head and part of their neck is white. The chest is a rusty color, the underbelly is white, and rump is black. While at rest, the wings are iridescent blue and green, mirroring the cap plumage. Females are brown and black with the exception of their white belly and white bar on their secondaries.

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