The Black-Bellied Whistling Ducks call is one of the most unique of the waterfowl. They are very vocal birds that tends to be found in large groups. The Black-Bellied Whistling Duck is a beautiful bird. It has a light red to pinkish bill, pinkish feet and a grey face. The dark eyes are set off by a white rings. Brown to chestnut feathers adorn the breast and of course it has black feathers on its belly. In flight, the black wings with a white patch make identification easy. If you are walking around your yard at evening, you may have heard the whistling flocks fly by.
If you are looking to find large groups, it is not hard to find them. Black-Bellied Whistling Ducks will congregate around golf course ponds and along flag ponds that have cattails or water lilies. They will wait in these groups and begin feeding at night.
Black-Bellied Whistling Ducks mate for life and have about 12 to 19 eggs. They tend to nest in tree holes or cavities. The survival rate for fledglings is low due to predators such as raccoons, snakes, fish and predatory birds. They search for food in agricultural fields that contain corn, millet or rice. They are year-long resident in Florida.
Cover Photo Credit: Jim E. Davis