The Australasian Shoveler is a unique species of bird belonging to the Anatidae family. It is also known as the shoveler duck due to the shape of its beak. This species is found in freshwater habitats in Australia, New Zealand, and nearby areas.
This bird is easily recognizable due to its large, broad beak. The beak is unique because of its shape. It resembles a shovel-shaped, which is where the bird gets its name. The shovel beak helps the bird catch small aquatic creatures like insects, crustaceans, and plants, which form their primary diet. The males have a distinctive green head, white breast, chestnut color on the sides, and distinguishing black, white, and blue feathers on their wings.
The Australasian Shoveler is not a very common species among birdwatchers, but it can be found in shallow and seasonal wetlands, swamps, marshes, and rice fields. They mostly feed at night or during dawn and dusk, flying to open areas, to rest and feed during the day. These birds are highly social, living in flocks during the non-breeding season and even pairing up with the opposite sex for breeding.
The breeding season of Australasian shoveler takes place from August to February. During this period, the male birds put on a beautiful display of synchronised motion to attract their mates. They may perform courtship dances, bobbing their head, and bill dipping. The female lays about 7 to 9 eggs during the breeding season, and both parents will take turns incubating the eggs.
In conclusion, the Australasian Shoveler bird may not be commonly known or seen, but it is one of the unique species of birds in the world. They are fascinating creatures with a distinguishable shape and color, behavior, social structure, and feeding habits that set them apart from other water birds.