Bird of the week – Australian Wood Duck Chenonetta jubata

The Australian Wood Duck is a small to medium-sized duck. It is usually seen around ponds and swamps. The female’s call is a long ‘mew’. The male’s call is shorter and higher pitched.

What the Australian Wood Duck looks like

The Australian Wood Duck is 44-50 cm in length. The male has a brown head and mane, while the female has a light brown head with two white stripes. Both males and females have a speckled breast. The upper wings are grey with a white bar containing a shiny green stripe, and the underwings are white-grey. The Australian Wood Duck has a dark olive-brown beak, brown eyes and dark olive-brown legs and feet.

Where the Australian Wood Duck lives

The Australian Wood Duck lives in many parts of Australia, except the hottest, driest parts. It is found in woodlands, grasslands, wetlands and farmlands.

What the Australian Wood Duck eats

The Australian Wood Duck eats grasses, soft plants and crops. It sometimes eats insects. It feeds by grazing on the ground or dabbling in shallow water.

How the Australian Wood Duck breeds

Australian Wood Ducks usually mate for life.

The adults breed in spring.

The female lays eight to ten eggs in a hole in a tree, above or near water.

The chicks hatch after four weeks. Both parents feed them.

The chicks stay with their parents for about four weeks. They fly after about seven weeks.

Flying birds

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3 responses

  1. Hi Kimberley – I would like to ask you about your male Australian Wood Duck photo regarding a project with the National Library of Australia. Could you please email me so we can correspond further.

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