Diving ducks

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Diving ducks catch fish and other aquatic animals under water. The most numerous of these is the tufted duck, a black-and-white duck resident on many lakes and reservoirs, while the handsome pochard breeds here in small but nationally important numbers.

Winter visitors among the diving ducks include scaup, mainly on estuaries, and ruddy duck, introduced from North America, on reservoirs.

Three species of diving duck known as 'sawbills' also visit in winter: smew and goosander to lakes and reservoirs and red-breasted merganser to estuaries. Sawbill ducks have a serrated edge to their bills that makes it easier for them to hold struggling fish.


© Owen Keen