This beautiful endemic shelduck has a large body like a goose and we see them often whether in city parks or farm fields. Wild ones aren’t tolerant of disturbance and readily take off with both birds in full cry – they are very noisy with distinct male/female voices and both are very vocal. The duck with the white head is the female. They mate for life.
I took these photos at Dunedin Botanic Garden at various times during our recent stay in Dunedin 23-25 June 2020. The 1st and 3rd photos were taken together, from a pedestrian bridge that’s high above a stream. Very fond of these vigilent birds. Sometimes see them perched on the top of fence-posts and in Christchurch I once saw a pair up high on the crossbar of a power-pole. New Zealand
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Tadorna variegata. Pūtangitangi.
If you’d like to read more there’s lots of information online about paradise shelducks. I’ll just provide one link that contains easily read, concise information:
Paradise Shelduck / by Tiritiri Matangi Open Sanctuary
Text and photos by Liz; Exploring Colour (2020)