Where Do Mallard Ducks Live?

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Mallard ducks live in many parts of the world and often migrate from north to south in order to find food during the winter. Learn about how mallard ducks feed on the grass at the bottom of a body of water with information from a science teacher in this free video on animal habitats.

Part of the Video Series: Animal Habitats
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Video Transcript

If you live anywhere in the United States or even in a lot of parts of Europe, you may be very familiar with my friends on the screen here. They're the mallard duck, probably what people think of when they think of duck is the mallard. That bright green head on the male is something that we all pretty well recognize. Mallard ducks like a lot of birds show something in nature that we call sexual dimorphism. There's a very different color pattern between the males and the females. Most scientists believe that it's because females need to sit on the nest and so their colors need to be more bland to allow them to camouflage, to blend in with the environment when they're trying to protect their eggs. The males on the other hand are responsible for attracting the females and those bright colors are one of the ways that they're able to do that. Now mallard ducks are very interesting species. As I said, they're very common in most of the United States and a lot of other parts of the world. They actually have a huge range. Many of them are migratory which means that they fly from one area of the country to another area of the country at different seasons. Frequently they fly from the north to the south looking for more food. However, mallards where I live in Florida are something called a non-native or an introduced species. They started to show up where they don't really belong. The reason that that's a problem is that the mallards can out-compete the native ducks that really are supposed to be here like the wood ducks and the model ducks. The mallards are very aggressive and they can live in large flocks, and that can be kind of intimidating and chase the food away from a lot of those other ducks. Now mallards are mostly vegetarian and you may have very well seen a picture of them sort of with their behinds in the air and their heads down, and what they're doing is they're nibbling on the grasses that grow on the bottom of ponds. They're beautiful ducks, and where they belong they're a great addition to the ecosystem. However, where they don't belong, they can cause some problems and eliminate some other species that are supposed to be there. I'm Janice Creneti and this is where do mallards live.


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