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African Pygmy Goose - BirdForum Opus

Photo by d.flack
Georgetown, Gambia, November 2016
Nettapus auritus


27–33 cm

  • Black crown and nape
  • White face
  • Green ear patches
  • Metallic green back
  • Light chestnut lower neck, breast and flanks

Females are smaller, rather grey, dark eye patches.


Sub-Saharan Africa: Eastern South Africa north to Ethiopia and Senegal; also Madagascar.


Photo by MikeB
Cuango river valley, northern Angola, April 2004

This is a monotypic species[1].


Swamps, marshes, shallow freshwater ponds, slow-flowing rivers and bays with an abundance of floating vegetation (especially Nymphaea waterlilies).



Nests are built in tree cavities, cliff holes and sometimes in the established nests of Hammerkop storks. The clutch consists of 6-12 eggs which are incubated for 23 days.


The diet consists of water lily seeds; also the seeds and green parts of other aquatic plants. They also eat some water insects and their larvae.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, D. Roberson, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2016. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: v2016, with updates to August 2016. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (retrieved February 2017)

Recommended Citation

External Links

GSearch checked for 2020 platform.